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Full text of "The Scottish Art Review 1888-1889"

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THE SCOTTISH 



ART REVIEW 



VOLUME II 



June to December 1889 




LONDON 

Walter Scott, 24 Warwick Lane, E.G. 
and Newcastle-on-Tyne 

1889 



Printed by T. &' A. Constable, Printers to Her Majesty, 
at the Edinburgh University Press. . 



INDEX 



ARTICLES 



Note. — Poetry is denoted by an asterisk at tlie beginning of line. 



A: 



ESTHETIC Development of America, 
A note on. By William Sharp, 162. 

American Art Notes. By Arthur Barnett, 79, 

155- 
Architecture, Recent, in West of Scotland — 
I. Govan and Barony Churches, 114. 
II. Hyndland Church, 177. 
III. Kellie House— R. C. Y. Club-House, 

197- 
Arbiter Elegantiarum. By Gleeson ^Vhite, 66. 
' Art for Art's Sake ' — A Contrast, 210. 
Arts and Crafts, The, 1889, 174. 
*At the Gate. By J. Logic Robertson, 159. 
Austen's, Miss, Lovers. By Margaret Hill, 

215. 
•Autumn Garden, An. By Arthur Tomson, 

193 

JJAUDELAIRE, 123. 

*Ba'vaird. By J. Logie Robertson, 32. 
Berlioz and Paganini Correspondence, 29. 
Browning on Art. By R. M. Adamson, 85. 



Ibsen's Early Life. By Havelock Ellis, 181. 
*Idyll of the British Museum, An. By Ernest 

Radford, 4. 
*In the Museum. By E. F. Strange, 166. 
Isabella ; or, The Pot of Basil. By Margaret 

Hill, 19. 
*Isolation. By Havelock Ellis, 166. 

L,A MORTE AMOREUSE. By Sir 

George Douglas, 160. 
Landscape, A Sketch of English. By Mrs. 

Mary Reed, 70. 
Lie, Jonas. By Walter Runeberg, 87. 
'Life and Death. By Graham R. Tomson, 

129. 
*Little Lattice. By Michael Field, 128. 
*Lycabetta. By Herman Joynes, 154. 



Ci 



^^ENTAUR, The. By Arthur Lemon, 122. 

Chateaux on the Loire. By Frank W. Simon, 
201. 

Children's Books and their Illustrators- 
George Cruikshank. By T. T. Greg, 219. 

Colony of Artists, A. By Morley Roberts, 72. 



*D 



ANTE'S Dream. By Gertrude Dix, 96. 



JCyXHIBITION of the Royal Academy of 

Arts, 5. 
Exhibition of the Works of the Societe des 

Pastellistes Fran9ais. By Esme Stuart, 132. 



\j-ROSVENOR Exhibition, The, 9. 
Group of Picturesque Scotch Puritans, A. 
William Jolly, 183. 



By 



H. 



LAUNT, An Artist's. By Arnaldo Fer- 

raguti, 139. 
*Heart's-Ease. By Martin Quern, 33. 
Herkomer's Pictorial Music Play, Professor. 

By Alice Corkran, 41. 
Her Leddyship. By J. M. Barrie, 26. 
*Hounds, A Run with the Sydney, 121. 
How I became an A.R.S.A., a Chapter of 

Autobiography, 163. 
Hugo's, Victor, House, An Impression of. 

By Mrs. Mary Reed, 147. 

1 BSEN on the Stage. By Arthur Symons, 

40. 
The Pillars of Society on the Stage, 88. 



M. 



LANSIONS of Scotland and their Con- 
tents, The : Pinkie House. By J. M. Gray, 
F.S.A., 47, 80. 

•Marguerite. By Ernest Radford, 125. 

Mediaeval Wayfarers, 56. 

Melville, Herman. By H. S. Salt, l85. 

•Metempsychosis. By James Bowker, 192. 

•Midsummer Night, A. By Violet Hunt, 62. 

Millet's Pictures at the Paris Exhibition, 1889. 
By Esme Stuart, 98, 

Muhrman, Heniy. By Graham R. Tomson, 

34- 
Municipal Encouragement of Art in Paris. 

By Cecil Nicholson, 209. 
•Museum, In the. By E. F. Strange, 166. 
•My Lady's Wreath. By C. Grey, 224. 



N. 



Q 



EGRO Songs. By L. A. S., 213. 
New Gallery, The, Regent Street, 7. 
Notes and Reviews, 30, 62, 94, 126, 156, 190, 
221. 

Orators, English. By J. M. Robert- 
son, 58. 

Opera Season, The. By George Bernard 
Shaw, III. 

•Orison of Midsummer, An. By William 
Renton, 24. 

Our Plates, 105, 155. 



P. 



ADDY of the Pit— an eccentric old Do- 
minie. By William Jolly, H.M.I.S., 52. 
Paris Causerie. By Cecil Nicholson, 10, 46, 

78. 175- 

•Pendant la Tempete. Translated by Edward 
Carpenter, 149. 

Pillars of Society on the Stage, The, 88. 

Pintos, The Three. By Emil Clauss, 16. 

Plague of ' Prettiness,' The. By Gleeson 
White, 194. 

Playbills. By J. C. Dibdin, 67. 

Political Economy and Fine Art. By Pro- 
fessor Patrick Geddes, 2. 



UEEN of Thule, The. 
Davidson, 93. 



By John 



R 



ECENT Architecture in West of Scot- 
land — 
I. Govan and Barony Churches, 1 14. 
II. Hyndland Church, 177. 
III. Kellie House— R. C. Y. Club-House, 
197. 
•Return of the Wandering Heir, The. By 

Sir George Douglas, Bart., 25. 
Review, A Century of Artists. By Mortimer 

Wheeler, 170. 
•Romance. By C. W. B. 
•Rubens Rose, The. By Charles Sayle, i, 
•Rue and Roses. By Michael Field, 125. 



DCHOOL, A Hedge, in Picardy. By Miss 

Mary Rose Hill Burton, 135. 
Scottish National Portrait Gallery, The, 126. 
Sculpture at the .Salon, 12. 
'Sgraffito. By George T. Robinson, F.S.A., 

101. 

Sketch of English Landscape, A. By Mrs. 

Mary Reed, 70. 
•Song. By Reginald Horsley, 223. 
•South Coast Idyl, A. By Graham R. Tom- 
son, 97. 
South Kensington, Students' Work at. By 

Gleeson White, 130. 
Style, and the Complaint of Sameness in Art 

Work, Of. By Ernest Radford, 34. 
Street Architecture. By Professor John Stuart 

Blackie, 14. 
Students' Work at South Kensington. By 

Gleeson AVhite, 130. 
Students' Work at South Kensington ; a 

Reply. By F. H. Newbery, 167. 



Ti 



HE Wanderer's Evensong (Goethe). 
Translated by Edward Carpenter, 193. 

•The Omen. By Sir George Douglas, 220. 

Thomson, James : Extracts from his Note- 
Books. By H. S. Salt, 91. 

*To a Cuckoo heard in Early Morning. By 
Michael Field, 218. 

•'To my Lady.' By C. Grey, 96. 

•To the North Sea. By Colin Percival, 192. 

Tourgu^neff, Tolstoi, and Dostoievsky — I. 
Tourgueneff. By Prince Kropotkin, 150. 



V 



ERDI'S Otello at the Lyceum. 
Marshall, 106. 



w. 



By Mrs. 



By 



AGNER Festival at Baireuth. 

James Oliphant, 109, 144. 
Whitman, Walt, Portraits of. ■ By Ernest 

Rhys, 17. 
•Witch Ladye, The. By Arthur Tomson, 65. 



JV 



INDEX 



PLATES AND FULL-PAGE ILLUSTRATIONS. 



Barony Church, Glasgow, The. By Alex. 

MacGibbon, 1 1 8. 
Bath of Venus, The. By E. Burne Jones, 

A.R.A., to face page i. 
By the Fire. By Henry Muhrman, 36. 
Carlyle. By James M'Neil Whistler, to face 

page loi. 
Centaur, The. By Arthur Lemon, 122. 
Chateau d'Amboise. Sketch by Frank W. 

Simon, 205. 
Day Dreams. By Dante Gabriel Rossetti, to 

face page 161. 
Field Workers, a Sketch. By Henry Muhr- 
man, to f cue page 33. 
Folly. By E. Onslow Ford, A.R.A., to face 

page 211. 
Family Dinner in the Middle Ages, 57. 
Group of Boys. By Sir George Harvey, 

/".R.S.A. From Drawing by A. Roche, 

172. 



' Her Leddyship.' Original Sketch by Alex. 
Roche, 28. 

Kellie House, Entrance Front. Sketch by 
Alexander MacGibbon, 199. 

Lance Throwers, The. By Puvis de Cha- 
vannes, to face page 144. 

Original Sketch. By P. A. Besnard, to face 
page 16. 

Paddy o' the Pit. Original Drawing by 
James Cadenhead, 52. 

Panels for St. George's Hall, Liverpool. By 
T. Stirling Lee, to face page 65. 

Pinkie House. Original Drawing by T. Craw- 
ford Hamilton, R.S.W., to face page 50. 

Portrait of Sir Thomas Hope. By George 
Jameson. Original Drawing by T. Craw- 
ford Hamilton, to face page 82. 

Portraits of Walt Whitman, 20, 21, 23. 

Reclining Girl and Butterflies. By Matthew 
Maris, to face page 129. 



Retable : The Four Seasons, 104. 

Scene from Peveril of the Peak. By W. Q. 

Orchardson, R.A. From Drawing by Alex. 

Roche, 169. 
'SgrafSto Work, 103. 
Sisters, The. By Thomas Gainsborough, 

R.A. From Drawing by Alex. Roche, 176. 
South Coast Idyl. By Alex. Roche, 97. 
' Te Deum.' Design by C. W. Whall, 1 12. 
Tower of Brass. By E. Burne Jones, A. R. A. , 

to face page 193. 
Travelling by Sea in the Fourteenth Century, 

57- 

Village Cross, The. Original Drawing by J. 
Crawford Hamilton, R.S.W., 45. 

Vignette Design. By Selwyn Image, Title- 
page. 

Winter on the Cairn. By James Paterson, 
69. 

Witch Ladye, The. By George Henry, 65. 



ARTISTS. 



Baillie, W. C. Tail-piece, 32, i6o. 
Besnard, P. A. Original Sketch, to face page 

16. 
Black, W. S. Tail-piece, 224. 
Burn-Murdoch, W. G. 'The Rubens Rose,' 

I. 

—— Tail-piece, 90. 

Burne Jones, E., A. R.A. 'The Bath of- 

Venus,' to face page i. 
— ' The Tower of Brass,' to face page 

193- 
Burton, Miss Mary Rose Hill. Five Sketches 

of a Hedge School in Picardy, 135. 
Cadenhead, James. 'Paddy o' the Pit,' 52, 

53- 

'Scotch Puritans,' 184, 185. 

Chavannes, Puvis de. ' The Lance Throwers,' 

to face page 144. 
Constable, John, R.A. English Landscape. 

From Drawing by Alex. Roche, 173. 
Ferraguti, Arnaldo. 'An Artist's Haunt,' 

Five Illustrations of, 139. 
Ford, E. Onslow. ' Folly,' to face page 

211. 
Gainsborough, Thomas, R.A. 'The Sisters.' 

From Drawing by Alexander Roche, to face 

page 176. 
Guthrie, J. & W. Stained Glass Window in 

Hyndland Church, 63. 
Hamilton, T. Crawford, R.S.W. Professor 

Herkomer's Pictorial Music- Play, 41. 



Hamilton, T. Crawford, R.S.W. The Village 
Cross, to face page 45. 

Pinkie House, 47, 48,49,50,81,84. 

Portrait of Sir Thomas Hope, to 

face page 82. 

Tail -piece, 84. 

Harvey, Sir George, i'.R.S.A. A Group of 

Boys. From Drawing by Alexander Roche, 

172. 
Henry, George. ' The Witch-Ladye,' 65. 
Image, Selwyn, Design by. Title-page. 
Jameson, George. Portrait of Sir Thomas 

Hope. Original Drawing by T. Crawford 

Hamilton, R.S.W., to face page $2. 
Lee, T. Stirling. Black-and-WTiite Sketch, 

' A Colony of Artists, '72. 
■ Panels for St. George's Hall, Liver- 
pool, to face page 65. 
Lemon, Arthur. 'The Centaur,' 122. 
Mann, Harrington. 'An Artist's Haunt,' 

139. 
MacCormick, A. D. Ten Original Sketches 

in Black and White. 'A Colony of 

Artists,' 72. 
MacGibbon, Alexander. The Govan and 

Barony Parish Churches, 115, 116, 117, 

118, 119, 120. 
Hyndland Church. Four Sketches, 

178, 179, iSo. 
R. C. Y. Club-House, and Kellie 

House, 197, 198, 199, 200. 



Maris, Matthew. Reclining Girl and Butter- 
flies, to face page 129. 

Mauve, Anton. 'Ploughing.' From Draw- 
ing by Alexander Roche, 173. 

Muhrman, Henry. ' Field SVorkers,' ^0 /rtff 
page 33. 

— — • Eight Original Sketches by, 35, 36, 

37. 3S, 39- 

Nardi, F. 'An Artist's Haunt,' Two Ori- 
ginal Sketches, 135. 

Orchardson, W. Q., R.A. Scene from Pev- 
eril of the Peak. From Drawing by Alex. 
Roche, 169. 

Paterson, James. ' Winter on the Cairn,' to 
face page 69. 

Roche, Alexander. ' Her Leddyship,' 28. 

'Silva,' 26. 

' A South Coast Idyl,' 97. 

Drawings to face pages 169, 172, 

173. 176. 
Rossetti, Dante Gabriel. ' Day Dreams, to 

face page 161. 
Simon, Frank W. 'Chateaux on the Loire.' 

Nine Illustrations, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 

206, 207, 208. 
Sumner, Heywood. Head-piece, ' Heart's- 

Ease,' 33, 64. 
Whall, C. W. 'Te Deum,' 112. 
Whistler, James M'Neil. 'Carlyle,' to face 

page loi. 
Wright, Allan. Tail-piece, 153. 



AUTHORS. 



« Bowker, James. ' Metempsychosis,' 192. Clauss, Emil. The Three Pintos, 16. ^ 

/\.DAMSON, R. M. Browning on Art, Burton, Miss Mary Rose Hill. A Hedge Corkran, Alice. Professor Herkomer's Pic- 
gj. School in Airaines, Picardy, 13S. torial Music-Play, 41. 



C. W. B. ' Romance,' 64. 



JDARNET, Arthur. American Art Notes, 

79. I55- 

Barrie, J. M. Her Leddyship, 26. 

Blackie, Professor John Stuart. Street Archi- 
tecture, 14. 



C-ARPENTER, Edward. 'Pendant la 
Tempete' (Theophile Gautier), translated 
by, 149. 

' The Wanderer s Evensong 

(Goethe), translated by, 193. 



D 



AVIDSON, John. 'The Queen of Thule,' 



Dibdin, J. C. Playbills, 67. 

Dix, Gertrude. ' Dante's Dream,' 96. 



INDEX 



Douglas, Sir George, Bart. ' The Return of 

the Wandering Heir,' 25. 
' La Slovte Amoreuse ' (for Music), 

160. 
'The Omen,' 220. 

JILlLIS, Havelocl;. 'Isolation,' 166. 
Ibsen's Early Life, Si. 



r ERRAGUTI, Arnaldo. An Artist's 
Haunt — A Chapter from the Reminiscences 
of a Painter, 139. 

Field, Michael. ' Rue and Roses,' 125. 

' Little Lettice,' 128. 

' To a Cuckoo heard in Early 

Morning,' 218. 



IjEDDES, Professor Patrick. Political 
Economy and Fine Art, 2. 

Gray, J. M., F.S. A. The Mansions of Scot- 
land and their Contents — Pinkie House, 47, 
80. 

Greg, T. T. Children's Books and their 
Illustrations — George Cruikshank, 219. 

Grey, C. ' To my Lady,' 96. 

'My Lady's Wreath,' 224. 



K 



Hi 



. ILL, Margaret. Miss Austen's Lovers, 
215. 
Horsley, Reginald. Song, 223. 
Hunt, Violet. ' Midsummer Night,' 62. 



Jolly, Wm., H.M.I.S. Paddy o' the 
Pit — an eccentric old Dominie, 52. 

■ A Group of Picturesque Scotch 

Puritans, 183. 

Joynes, Herman. 'Lycabetta,' 154. 



ROPOTKIN, Prince. Tourgueneff, 
Tolstoi, and Dostoievsky. —I. Tourgueneff, 
150. 



L. 



J. A. S. Negro Songs, 213. 
Lemon, Arthur. 'The Centaur,' 122. 



Marshall, Mrs. Verdi's Otel/o at 

the Lyceum, 106. 
Macdonald, T. F. A Run with the Sydney 

Hounds, 121. 
MacGibbon, Alexander. The Govan and 

Barony Parish Churches, 114. 
Kellie House— R. C. Y. Club- 

House, 197. 

JN ICHOLSON, Cecil. Municipal Encour- 
agement of Art in Paris, 209. 

Paris Causerie, 10, 78, 175. 

Paris Art Notes, 46. 

Pestalozzi, 105. 

OlIPH ANT, James, The Wagner Festival 
at Baireuth, 109, 144. 



192. 



Q 



Reed, Mrs. Maiy. A Sketch in English Land- 
scape, 70. 

An Impression of Victor Hugo's 

House, 147. 

Renton, William. 'An Orison of Midsummer,' 
24. 

'Baudelaire,' 123. 

Rhys, Ernest. The Portraits of Walt Whit- 
man, 17. 

Roberts, Morley. A Colony of Artists, 72. 

Robertson, J. Logic. ' Ba'vaird,' 32. 

' At the Gate,' 159. 

• John M. Orator's English, 58. 

Robinson, George T., F.S. A. 'Sgraffito, loi. 

Runeberg, Walter. Jonas Lie, 87. 



C)ALT, H. S. Some Extracts from James 

Thomson's Note-books, 91. 

Herman Melville, 186. 

Sayle, Charles. ' The Rubens Rose,' I. 
Sharp, William. A Note on the ^^isthetic 

Development of America, 162. 
Shaw, George Bernard. The Opera Season, 

III. 
Simon, Frank W. Chateaux on the Loire, 201. 
Stuart, Esme. Millet's_Pictures at the Paris 

Exhibition, 18S9, 98." 
Exhibition of the Works of the 

Societe des Pastellistes Fran9ais, 132. 



TERCIVAL, Colin. 'To the North Sea,' 'X' 



UERN, Martin. ' Hcart's-Ease,' 33. 



OMSON, Arthur. ' An Autumn Garden,' 

193. 

' The Witch- Ladye,' 65. 

Graham R. Henry Muhrman, 34. 

' A South-Coast Idyl,' 97. 

' Life and Death,' 129. 



IVADFORD, Ernest. 'An Idyll of the 

British Museum,' 4. 
Of Style, and of the Complaint of 

' Sameness ' in Art Work, 34. 

' Marguerite,' 125. 

After Goethe, 161. 

— After Heine, 161. 



Wi 



RevieW' — .-/ 



HEELER, Mortimer. 
Centiiiy of Artists, 170. 

White, Gleeson, Arbiter Elegantiarum, 66. 

Students' Work at South Kensing- 
ton, 1889, 130. 

The Plague of ' Prettiness,' 194. 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2011 with funding from 
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The Scottish Art Review 



Edited by JAMES MAVOR. 



Vol.. TI. 



JUNE 1889. 



No. 13. 




THE RUBENS ROSE. 



LOVELY rose! I gathered you 

When Love and 1 together lay. 

I saw you in her eyes of bkie — 
So long ago as yesterday. 



Ah me ! upon my desk you stand, 

Now she has vanished from our sight : 

Hut you keep something of lier hand. 
And ravish me witji fresli deliglit. 



Ere you have bloomed and faded, i-ose, 
Perhaps, perhaps — but wlio can tell 't- 

Slie may be here again, — wlio knows .' — 
She may be liere, all may be well ! 




THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



POLITICAL ECONOMY AND FINE ART. 



POLITICAL Economy of art? What subject can 
be more uninviting ? Political economy is noto- 
riously dismal enough reading at best ; but of art — not 
even the political economist has ever got the length of 
interesting himself in this ; he is as indifferent to it as 
the artist can be to political economy. And at this 
time of day there could be little use in merely recall- 
ing the unattractive title of an early and little read 
minor work of Mr. Ruskin's. 

Yet all this is but sliallow thinking before we rouse 
ourselves. The political economy of art means more 
than this, and comes nearer to us. Let us realise its 
meanings for a moment — even two or three of them — 
and we shall think different!}'. First, then, say prac- 
tical economics of art — that is ah-eady better. And in 
homelier English — beautiful things, and how to have 
more of them. Social conditions which make for 
beauty, and how to organise them. The artists — 
beauty-makers — how to help them. How they can 
best help themselves, and help us. This surely covers 
a good deal of what we are all discussing — all thinking 
about. But if so, we have been talking the political 
economy of art without recognising it, as sure as ever 
M. Jourdain talked prose. Why not clear up our ideas 
a little further ? The artist may — indeed must — admit 
all this, yet none the less feel somewhat uncomfort- 
able. He has some suspicion we may be trying to 
inveigle him within the precincts of the dismal science ; 
and once there, who knows what may happen ? He 
fears he may be let in for a digest of Murdstone's 
Lectures on the Almighti/ Dollar, hear a string of quota- 
tions from Cackle's Iiuhi.slriul Progress, and be solemnly 
reproved for feeling disappointed about selling so little 
lately out of Grindface O71 the Wages Fund. But with 
a little patience we may work out together a better 
political economy than that. 

For, from the very outset, we may take, not the 
student's way, but the artist's ; not read books, but 
observe the present world with our own outward eyes, 
and picture its past with our own inward ones. How 
men have lived and laboured from the times of old 
even until now, and how we shall now laboin- in our 
turn — in what way and to what end — that is political 
economy. And, if we think of it, what else in this 
world is there which is so profoundly interesting to 
the artist, so well worth his thinking about, when he 
has finished his immediate daily task, which, indeed, 
finds its whole meaning and success as a fractional 
part of this vast unceasing drama of human labour ? 

And our own work, poor fraction though it may be 
of the multitudinous whole, why is it so uncertain and 
unprosperous ? How comes it that the artists should 
be labouring on year after year, sending all their best 
work, chiefly for the benefit and glorification of forty 
of the richest of them, to one enormous show, which a 



gaping public crowds like a bazaar for a month or two : 
save, of course, so far as buying is concerned — only five 
or ten per cent, of that ! Is it not time we took somie 
counsel together ? And so at length we have an Art 
Congress, which has taken for its annual task, not 
simply the discussion of the internal questions of paint- 
ing, sculpture, and architecture, but their external and 
public question also — that of the ' National and Muni- 
cipal lincouragement of Art.' That is to say, another 
portion of the political economy of art. And what 
manner of Congressmen shall we be unless we take 
some pains to consider our demands ? Are we simply 
to say what we think we should like the public to come 
and give us, and then cry because we don't get it ; or 
shall we see what we really could begin to do at once 
for the public, and so interest and gain influence with 
it more and more every year, until its generous and 
wise encouragement, both municipal and national, is at 
length secured ? The first method, certainly, was 
dominant at the recent Congress ; but, unless the 
second have its turn, there is little hope of much of 
the encouragement desired. 

The drama of labour has been changing from age to 
age, and with it, of course, men's general account of it, 
i.e. their economic theory; similarly, too, their ideas and 
maxims of practical economics. The Athenians in the 
time of Pericles had their theory of national economy 
— and, by the way, it is not hard to see that ' national 
and municipal encouragement of art ' constituteda very 
substantial part of it : so, too, with all great ancient 
and mediaeval cities. But what are these modern 
industrial cities of ours .'' Instead of private simplicity 
and public magnificence, we have now the very oppo- 
site, high living and plain thinking, personal and 
social respectively, having this long time been the rule. 
Economic theory has become all but purely personal : 
we read much of individual competition in gaining 
private riches, but little of social co-operation to make 
any visible public wealth, even the most humane 
economic theorists at best distinguishing the latter 
from ' real business ' as ' mere philanthropy,' a luxury 
outside the serious business of life. The old economists, 
however, simply looked at these private simplicities, 
this public magnificence, as making up between them 
that sum of civic activities which was the real object 
of their science, the minor special study of the per- 
sonal games of buying, selling, and getting gain, 
which has since come to usurp the title of political 
economy, not having been thought of much import- 
ance. Nor was the founder of modern economics 
of any different way of thinking. For Fran9ois de 
Quesnaj', patriarch of that school of thinkers which, 
discerning economics as a natural science, a physio- 
logy of the social organism, came to be known as 
Phi/siocralic, the primary limit of our national wealth 




THE BATH OT VEInUS. 

By Eb^abd Borne Jones. A.E A. 



By permission of VviLi.iAii CossA.i.. Jc , Esq. 



POLITICAL ECONOMY AND FINE ART 



3 



was the sum of energy which could yearly be got out 
of Mother Nature — the raw materialsj the crops and 
coals ; these the manufacturer and the craftsman had 
to get into shape, and the merchant to transport and 
deliver at the place where the products were to be con- 
sumed. The artist was then recognised on a level 
with these labourers — nay, more, as a producer of pecu- 
liar skill, and permanence of product, thereby of special 
importance to the national wealth. Here, in short, 
was the economic theory corresponding to the state of 
French industry in the last century — that of a nation 
primarily agricultural, yet foremost also in artistic pro- 
duction, and respecting this accordingly. Increase of 
wealth, thrift, saving, all meant substantially stonng ; 
some permanent products of each j'ear's industry out- 
lived the year ; and thus, and thus only, grew rich the 
great old cities of the world. 

But with the extraordinary development of mechani- 
cal industry in England, a new account of things — a 
new theory of political economy — had also to arise ; 
for the more speculative minds of the rapidly growing 
manufacturing and commercial towns could not but 
commence to frame the theory of the industrial de- 
velopment around them. 

The first and greatest of these economic thinkers — 
the future author of the Wealth of Nations — very 
naturally arose in the keen atmosphere of one of those 
little old Fifeshire burghs which had so long been the 
centre of an active trade with Holland, but which had 
suffered at the Union ; towns full of intellects sharp- 
ened by much catechism, much sharp bargaining with 
the Dutchman, and a peculiarly hard struggle for exist- 
ence. There, too, all the essential economic pheno- 
mena are set forth upon the smallest, and therefore 
most simply intelligible, scale ; we have agriculture, 
mining and fishery, manufactures of many kinds, 
transport by land and sea, foreign and inland com- 
merce, and what not. Even now, for the observant 
student of economics, there is no more fascinating of 
economic microcosms, perhaps, in Europe ; in a single 
day's walk you come face to face with three-fourths of 
the industrial phenomena of the world. The right place, 
certainly, for Adam Smith to come from, yet the micro- 
cosm has one notable economic deficiency : the artistic 
industries were — for that matter still are — completely 
absent. So young Smith, as a boy, gazed in at the 
doors of the Pathhead nail-makers' shops, and thus 
began to grasp what he afterwards made so clear as 
the principle of division of labour ; he listened to his 
father, the customs collector, talking shrewdly of 
taxation, of the state of business, of the Dutch trade, 
and what not. In Glasgow, too, which was then 
commencing its marvellous expansion, he would hear 
much of foreign commerce and exchange ; and after 
finishing his logical equipment at Oxford, he became 
finally devoted to economics, through the impulse of 
the Physiocrats, whose acquaintance he made in Paris, 
and came back to Scotland, to his professorship and 
his magnum opus. 



But note his limitations. On the artistic side we 
may fairly say these were absolute ; for him certainly 
there was no political economy of art. What of muni- 
cipal feeling > Alas ! again, no other circumstance or 
upbringing could have been more peculiarly limited. 
For this, of all towns, was Kirkcaldy — proverbially the 
' lang toun' — then, and for long after, a single narrow 
dirty street, straggling for miles along a still neglected 
shore. Civic feeling, faint enough anywhere, was here 
physically excluded ; such a town could have no sense 
of municipal unity, no public life, unusually little even 
of common acquaintance. And when we see the 
youth's subsequent education at Glasgow and Oxford, 
probably those two of all universities whatsoever where 
gownsmen were, in various ways, most separated from 
townsmen, we see how naturally and unconsciously 
there came to be another stupendous blank in the 
Wealth of Nations. Moreover, having been stolen by 
gipsies when a mere child, he was ever after carefully 
guarded by an anxious mamma from straying into any 
uncertain company out of her sight. And so he lost 
that close and sympathetic contact with the actual 
life and labour of his poorer brethren which would 
have supplied the third missing element in his thought 
and work, but he became all the more fitted as the 
honest because unconscious exponent of the thought 
and interests of the rising middle classes, and for all 
practical purposes of these alone. 

Three serious limitations these for the man who was 
to write what became substantially the Bible of the 
next two generations. Yet it takes some thought to 
realise the full bearing, the tragic consequences, of 
these. That this momentous reconstruction of political 
economy, this authoritative theory of modern industry, 
which has influenced not only the policy of nations, but 
the whole life and daily thought of modern Europe 
more profoundly than any other written word between 
Jean Jacques Rousseau and Darwin,should be so frankly 
destitute, as no great work on economics had ever been 
before, of the civic sentiment on the one hand, and of 
the slightest artistic knowledge, sympathy, or sentiment 
on the other, not to speak here of popular sympathies — 
meant thenceforward the rigorous exclusion of these 
from the economic literature of Europe. Thus arose 
in its might the Smithian school, nay, the entire 
dismal science, and to this day there is hardly a single 
academic economist, certainly even very few journalistic 
ones, in whose minds these cardinal limitations are not 
at least largely preserved ; the artistic one is indeed 
only beginning to be seriously questioned. 

Hence the historic importance of Ruskin as an 
economic reformer. While the Socialist schools had 
risen in revolt specially against the individualistic and 
competitive gospel of the orthodox economists, he was 
naturally in the first place exasperated by their com- 
plete aesthetic deadness, their naive civic idiocy. He 
clearly saw and proclaimed their conventional exclu- 
sion, in the name of science, of all active moral prin- 
ciple from economic theory and practice, and consequent 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



inevitable consecration of acquisitive selfishness, to be 
a mere consequence of these limitations of their own 
culture, and so had to define for us afresh the highest 
conception of practical economics, as no longer a mere 
paltry matter of exchange, and getting the better in 
it, but as ' a system of conduct, founded on the sciences, 
directing the arts, and impossible except under certain 
conditions of moral culture.' The German school of 
' national economy ' had, meanwhile, been making the 
transition from English and French theorising to his- 
toric study of the national development; the socialistic 
schools have the main credit of discerning how much 
of our boasted progress in mechanism, wealth, and 
population has its obverse in the increase of an un- 
skilled, indebted, and degraded populace ; but it is to 
Ruskin that we especially owe the rehabilitation of the 
fine arts, hitherto ignored, or even rebutted by the 
economist as matters of unproductive luxury. These 
henceforth occupy their rightful place as the highest 
processes of industry ; the artist, therefore, is again 
the supreme producer of wealth, permanent and stor- 
able ; not simply the weaver, collier, and mechanician, 
the manufacturer and the merchant, the money-lender 
and the speculator. So the wealth of nations must com- 
mence once more with the permanent treasure of the 
public, not be everlastingly measured in private win- 
nings and public debts. We say, therefore, advisedly, 
that despite their absence of system, their irritating- 
digressions, their stormy passion and enthusiasm, there 
is more matter of scientific permanence and value in 
Munera Pulveris, the Two PnUis, and Fors C/avigera, 
than in all the post-Smithian economic text-books 
of our universities put together. Furthermore, 
popular impression to the contrary, these contribu- 
tions towards scientific economics which are to be 



gathered from Mr. Ruskin's books will long outlive 
and outserve the same author's brilliant and hi- 
spiring, but less scientific, work in art criticism. 
Thirdly, the coincidence of economic construction 
with art criticism in the same career is in no wise a 
mere individual eccentricity, as conventional econo- 
mists and other unthinking writers have constantly 
supposed, but is an organic connection permanently 
necessary to comprehensive views in either subject. 
We are realising with increasing clearness that the 
economic system which (1) ignores the study of all the 
highest and most permanent economic products and 
processes, and, consequently, (2) also refuses to examine 
into the consumption of our wealth, and with this (3) to 
consider the effect of such consumption and production 
upon the consumer and the producer, is not an econo- 
mic theory at all. Conversely, too, for art criticism ; 
for the question which the critic asks of each product in 
no small measure resolves itself into the economic one: 
Is this thing really wealth, and, if so, of what kind ? — 
thus immediately influencing the demand for, and the 
exchange value of, the product, and so coming within 
the range of the most conventional economist. The 
political economy of art is thus no minor province of 
thought: it involves the deepest questions alike of art 
and economics, which come into contact at almost 
every point. Nor is it too much to say that the future 
of both art and economics depends in very great 
measure upon this reunion. Surely too, our highest 
form of industry is worthy of our highest and clearest 
industi'ial thought, our most energetic direction into 
the public service. Let this be once well begun, by 
artists who again understand their social and economic 
value, and there is no fear of ' national and municipal 
encouragement.' Patrick Geddes. 



AN IDYLL OF THE BRITISH MUSEUM. 

SHE moved, admiring students said. 
Amid the marbles like their Queen : 
He bore, a little high, his head, 
Aware of godlike mien. 

'Tis afternoon : — the long slant rays 

Make hot the dim Egyptian room — 

Our Queen her little luncheon lays 

On a low sculptured tomb. 

And now the lad — his dark curls float 
As if from hers their gold to win — 
Draws from an ancient velvet coat 
A paint-smeared sandwich-tin. 

Love spreads the feast : their lips have met ! 
(So grace is said, and lingered o'er !) 
Grey Gods, j'e smiled, nor look ye yet 
All grimlv serious as before. 



Ernest Radford. 



THE EXHIBITION OF THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF ARTS 



THE EXHIBITION OF THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF ARTS. 



HERE each portrayeth what lies nearest to his heart, 
or that of a purchaser, probable or visionary, 
and the result is a strange medley. ' Summa ars est 
celare artem ' : so thinks the Academician who is a slave 
to the traditions of his fellows, for in this year's ex- 
hibition, as on previous occasions, much is nearly hidden 
from the naked eye that deserves a place on the line, 
while positions of prominence are occupied bj' pictures 
that would never stand the test of a selecting com- 
mittee chosen by the artists of to-day. Yet it must be 
admitted that we have found at the Royal Academy 
this May distinct evidence of the growth of more 
liberal ideas amongst its members, which tend to satis- 
faction when they are apparent in their better 
arrangement of works not entirely subject to academical 
laws, and a sense almost of pity when revealed in the 
experiments of academical artists themselves. 

Portraiture is over well represented. This is not 
unaccountable, for the times are hard and sitters 
exacting, and even the fear of caricature at the hand 
of Mr. Punch's clever artists will not deter those 
who have paid for an expensive portrait from the 
notoriety offered to them by the walls of Burlington 
House. 

In respects other than we have stated above, the 
show resembles those recentlj' preceding it : the 
same subjects, the same experiments in the disposi- 
tion of paint meet our eyes ; nothing that is origi- 
nal, and much that is mediocre, and much that is 
very good. 

That the general aspect of such a collection does 
not present a spectacle alluring to the eye is not 
entirely the fault of the Hanging Committee, for their 
task has been a trying one, and many ugly combination 
of colour were inevitable. Judicious handling is often 
lost entirely to the observer, and with it the purpose 
of the artist ; decorative results, too, depend upon 
juxtaposition, therefore those who have chosen subjects 
mostly illustrative will naturally find prominence in 
popular favour. 

The first picture tliat arrests our attention in Room 
No. I. is Mr. Colin Hunter's ' Baiters,' an effect of 
sunlight on a rocky coast. The excessive use of trans- 
parent colour, especially in the figures, somewhat mars 
this production, and gives it a quality more desirable in 
stained glass windows. ' Roses and Violets,' by Miss 
Alice Havers, is an excellent piece of painting, and 
Mr. Logsdail's ' Sunday in the City ' shows careful 
drawing and close observation of relative values. 

Mr. J. C. Hook is represented by many marines, all 
nearly resembling his contributions of former years ; 
they have the same largeness of treatment, and a fresh 
outdoor feeling which comes of the artist's intense 



sympathy with his subjects. 'The Seaweed Raker' 
and ' The Fowler's Pool ' are pleasant specimens of 
this artist's work. The President's ' Sybil ' is a harm- 
less young lady clad in plum-coloured draperies, pre- 
sumably classical ; it is graceful in line, and has all Sir 
Frederick's well-known qualities of texture and 
handling. ' As when the Sun doth light a Storm,' by 
Mr. Henry Moore, is luminous, though a trifle painty ; 
the movement of the waves is well expressed. 

A small picture by Mr. Owen Dalziel (No. 6i) 
deserves attention, it is so good in tone and so artisti- 
cally done. ' The Surrender,' Mr. Seymour Lucas's 
most important effort in the present collection, is a 
possible illustration of an historical event; as such it 
is sure to prove attractive. It is thinly painted, and 
rather conventionally composed. One of Sir J. E. 
Millais's landscapes occupies an important position in 
this room ; it differs little, though, from a class of work 
known as ' commercial.' 

In Gallery No. II. we find Mr. J. Sargent's 'George 
Henschel, Esq.' one of the most striking portraits in 
the exhibition ; it is an example of marvellous spon- 
taneity and skilful painting, of truth of tone and well- 
selected colour. Here is another portrait not so well 
hung as it deserves, also very good ; it is by Mr. Mouat 
Loudon, who has represented the grace of childhood 
in an harmonious and workmanlike manner. There is 
a charm too in a picture of a child, hanging close to 
Mr. Loudon's, by Mr. Arthur May. 

Undoubtedly one of the artistic events of the year 
is the appearance of Mr. John M. Swan's works in our 
London exhibitions : to the Academy has come his 
' Prodigal Son,' which has received the welcome it 
certainly deserved. No more scholarly and poetic 
rendering of this well-worn subject has ever, to our 
mind, been publicly shown in England ; in tone, draw- 
ing, and execution this picture leaves nothing to be 
desired. The figure of the man is admirably modelled 
and suggestive in attitude ; the background is imagina- 
tive and suitable. Here we find an artist who can not 
only think for himself, but who has also at his disposal 
the power of conveying to us his thoughts in the 
medium he has chosen. 

' The Passing of Arthur,' by Mr. Frank Dicksee, 
takes up considerable space on the line of the 
second room ; weeping women, moonlight, and all 
the well-recognised properties of pictorial senti- 
mentality are here exhausted, but the picture fails to 
impress us. 

No. 171, by Mr. J. W. Waterhouse, is an unambitious 
work by a great painter ; it represents children gather- 
ing olives, and is remarkable for the happy disposition 



6 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



of the figures and the careful observation that is 
evident in the painting of the landscape. 

Placed far too high is Mr. Mark Fisher's picture of 
' The Ford,' a very skilful interpretation of shifting 
sunlight, of bright tones truthfully and harmoniously 
arranged. As is usual in all that we have seen of Mr. 
Fisher's, the cattle are beautifully drawn and con- 
structed, and admirable in their relation to their sur- 
roundings. ' Upland,' by Mr. Laurance Scott, is pleasant 
in its intonation. Mr. Poynter's picture, representing 
a Greek maiden engaged in entomological research, is 
decorative, and although laboured, is not disagreeable 
in colour ; it has, moreover, much interesting detail. 

Gallery No. III. — The large room this year seems 
to have fewer big canvases than usual, though several 
of the most important. Mr. Henry Moore's large marine 
entitled 'Shine and Shower' hangs here, and has all 
merits which the best of that artist's work contains, — 
a sky full of movement and atmosphere, and a blue sea 
well modelled and delightful in colour. There are 
certain effects of which Mr. Moore has made himself 
master ; this is one of them. Mr. Goodall's large 
landscape will one day have historical value, when the 
metropolis shall have absorbed Harrow-on-the-Hill, 
and its pastoral beauties be a thing of the past. One 
of the most attractive pictures in the collection is the 
' Ophelia ' by Mr. Waterhouse. He represents the dis- 
traught maiden lying in a green meadow ; she is clad 
in white, and the necessary variation of colour is 
obtained in the flowers she has adorned herself with ; 
the look of pathetic insanity in the face is rendered 
with scientific subtlety ; the figure is well drawn and 
modelled. Throughout Mr. Waterhouse seems to have 
obtained the highest poetical feeling compatible with 
artistic expression in paint. There is considerable 
movement and knowledge of form in Mr. Riviere's 
horses (No. 231). 'The Young Duke' is one of Mr. 
Orchardson's graceful illustrations of aristocratic life in 
the time of the Georges, a period which his mannered 
but i-efined method of painting aids him so well in 
treating. The young duke's friends who are wishing 
him well have certainly a strange family likeness to 
each other, but there is a great deal in the picture to 
satisfy the artistic senses, in its many delicate combina- 
tions of colour and tone, those qualities which give 
Mr. Orchardson the foremost place amongst painters 
of subject pictures. 

An interesting portrait is that of Sir William Bow- 
man by Mr. Ouless ; it is admirably modelled. Mr. 
Alma-Tadema is represented this year by one small 
picture, ' At the Shrine of Venus,' which appears to 
be the successful result of much labour ; as a design it 
is a little confused, but has great charm of colour, 
and the artist's usual dexterous rendering of manifold 
surfaces and textures. 

Mr. Watts has sent his more important works to the 
New Gallery, but ' The Habit doesn't make the 
Monk ' is handled in a manner consistent with its 



subject, upon which much thought has been evidently 
bestowed. 

Mr. Arthur Lemon's poetical picture, ' At the Close 
of the Day,' in Room No. IV., is decoratively con- 
structed and masterly in its painting ; the horses are 
well drawn, and show the result of close and sympa- 
thetic observation. No. 3i3, a huge canvas by Mr. 
Vicat Cole, is theatrical in eifect, and coarse and ele- 
mentary in its colour. Mrs. Stokes's contribution. 
No. 358, a boy sitting by a dead child, is impressively 
gruesome ; it is, though, distinctly the work of a 
cultured artist. There are besides in this gallery good 
landscapes by Messrs. Buxton Knight and' Lawton 
Wingate, and a successful illustration by F. D. Millet. 
Passing on to the next gallery, we find an excellent 
Colin Hunter called 'The Morning Breeze'; a vast 
panorama by John MacWhirter of ' Constantinople 
and the Golden Horn ' ; and a romantic yet scientific 
rendering of the Norfolk Broads (unjustly skied) by 
Mr. W. j. Laidlay. 

Strong in its realism, yet dramatic to a degree, is 
Mr. Tuke's ' All hands to the Pumps ' : the sailors who 
occupy the deck of the doomed ship are no persons of 
artistic fiction, but such men as would be found on 
such a vessel as Mr. Tuke has depicted. With great 
reticence and skill the artist has represented what 
emotion was necessary in the faces and figures for the 
realisation of the scene ; the picture is throughout exe- 
cuted in a most workmanlike manner. ' The Mill on the 
Marsh,' by Mr. T. F. Goodall, is agreeable in colour. 
Two portraits by Mr. H. Herkomer and Miss Naylor 
claim our attention, the first for its strength of modelling, 
the other for a pretty arrangement of red and pink tones. 

Mr. Herkomer's large picture of the interior of the 
Chai'terhouse Chapel is not in colour, but it has some 
interesting delineations of cliaracter, and several 
dignified figures. Mr. John White's 'Village Beauty' 
is the better of the two pictui'es he exhibits, being full 
of sunlight and pleasing, if not altogether truthful, 
tones. A nude figure (No. 593) by Mr. Oliver Ayrton, 
a name we do not remember having noticed before, 
is graceful and well painted, which cannot be said of 
similar efforts by certain well-known members and 
Associates of the Academy. The pictures by Messrs. 
Stanhope Forbes and Frank Bramley, although dif- 
ferent in subject, have much the same qualities of 
exact technique and clever drawing; we prefer the 
composition of Mr. Forbes's picture ' The Health of the 
Bride,' the effect of ' Saved ' being to us a little marred 
by the variety of lights by which Mr. Bramley has 
chosen to illuminate his figures. ' Minutes are like 
hours,' fisher-folk waiting for the return of a vessel, is 
a charming arrangement of cool greys and well- 
modelled waves by Mr. Brangwyn. We prefer Mr. 
David Murray's ' Moat Farm ' to his ' Hop Garden ' ; it 
is more poetically lighted and skilfully constructed, 
and has none of the metallic hues of the latter. 

Mr. Robert Macgregor's ' Story of the Flood ' some- 



THE NEW GALLERY, REGENT STREET 



what resembles a picture by Israels in its refinement 
of colour and tone ; it has less, though, of the Dutch 
painter's monotony of sentiment. There is great 
merit, too, in the landscapes of Messrs. Edwin Nichol 
and Noble, and the clever study of a child's head by 
Mr. Alexander Mann. 

The sky in Mr. Adrian Stokes's marine is boldly con- 
ceived and soundly painted ; and there is good quality 
of colour in Mr. Edward Elliot's ' Last Load.' Realistic 
painting, with all its beauties, does not seem to lead to 
successful results when applied to mythical subjects 
in the works of Mr. Solomon J. Solomon and Mr. 
Arthur Hacker (' Sacred and Profane Love ' and ' The 
Return of Persephone to Earth ') ; one cannot fail to 
admire the learned technique and dexterous drawing. 
But one regrets, nevertheless, the absence of those 



conventionalities which alone assist us to realise the 
poetic meaning of the idea each artist has here at- 
tempted to incorporate. 

Limited space prevents us from more than naming 
some excellent landscapes in these last two rooms : 
' Green Pastures,' by Edward Elliot ; ' A Dutch River,' 
by Leslie Thomson ; Mr. Robert Allan's dignified 
' Home from the Meadows,' and Mr. Peppercorn's 
subdued and poetic study of tone (No. 1176). Nor 
should we fail to omit from the list of works that grace 
these walls Mr. W. R. Symonds's ' Portrait of an old 
Lady,' and Mr. Titcomb's ' Priinitive Methodist.' As to 
the sculpture, amongst much that is very good we can 
only mention Mr. Onslow Ford's complete and entirely 
artistic statuette, and Mr. Bates's fine and vigorous 
group ' Hounds in Leash.' 



THE NEW GALLERY, REGENT STREET. 



AFTER the first shock of surprise at finding that 
Mr. Burne-Jones is only represented at the 
'New' Gallery by sending designs and drawings in 
chalk, more charming in some ways than his oil 
paintings, one realises that owe of the pictures in which 
most interest will centre is undoubtedly that painted 
by Mr. John Sai'gent of Miss Ellen Terry in the 
famous beetle robe worn by her as Lady Macbeth. 
Not only will it serve as a topic of leading interest on 
account of Miss Terry's general picturesqueness, and 
her unorthodox version of the Thane's wife, but as an 
original conception of splendour in colour, of harmony 
and interplay of curves, it is bound to provoke discussion, 
if not to evoke general admiration ; for it is of too 
remarkable a nature to be either overlooked or ignored, 
though its very audacity is certain to inspire a measure 
of distrust in the minds of a certain section to whom 
the unaccustomed is — the wrong. A brilliant oppor- 
tunity came in Mr. Sargent's way, and brilliantly has 
he availed himself of it. With the same mastery, the 
same trend towards original methods, that made his 
experiments of former years rank high among the 
realistic successes of the abler 'moderns' has he 
essayed this study of Miss Terry as Lady Macbeth. 
Choosing to paint the beautiful, lithe figure in barbaric 
attire against a deep intense blue, he has set her before 
us on a background as of midnight, typical indeed of 
the gloom of her clouded fortunes. One thing — a 
trifle perhaps — mars it from the artistic and psychologic 
view, namely, that a suspicion of rouge on the lips of 
this pale, distraught woman, holding a crown in her 
beautiful hands above her head, suggests the theatrical 
atmosphere a shade too literally, and is, to this extent, 
a disillusion, for with the ashen face that here tells of 
a great and consuming grief, with the dilated eyes, 
lustrous and pale from sleeplessness, should surely go 



the bloodless lips wrought grey by suffering. But 
beyond this jarring note there is little to carp at, 
though an eye keen to mark anachronism will not fail 
to lay stress on the fact that a garment coruscating 
with beetles was surely not invented in the days when 
Macbeth was Thane of Cawdor. Still less, however, 
was Miss Terry herself invented. 

It is possible to remain unsatisfied as well as uncon- 
vinced that in Miss Terry's rendering of the character 
we get the full strength and merciless temper of Lady 
Macbeth as Shakespeare drew her for us ; still, setting 
that aside as only a criticism of the actress's limitation, 
and not of the man who has seized upon a felicitous 
moment to paint her, there is sufficient emotional value 
in the rigidity of the figure, which is magnificently 
posed, in the tense white face and fixed eyes, and in 
the subtle touch of shadow falling from the upheld 
crown on the brow to more than compel one's 
admiration of its dramatic and aesthetic sugges- 
tion. 

If we get more especially in Mr. Sargent's work a 
triumph of splendid colour, no less is it evident that 
in Mr. C. N. Kennedy's ' Neptune,' which hangs close 
by on the ■ same wall, we see something quite as 
specifically artistic and imaginative, though different in 
temper, tone, and thought. The charm about this 
picture lies in its freshness of idea and treatment, for 
there is vigour and naturalness of movement about the 
three figures — the young Neptune, trident in hand, 
and his companions, the Nereid and the small child, 
as they ride with accustomed ease on the backs of the 
huge monsters through the deep. Both dolphins and 
' the young lord of the seas ' seem perfectly happy in 
their element; there is 'go' and motion in it all, and 
one expects momentarily to see the great limpid wave 
come sweeping over them. But no ! there is a rush 



8 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



through the water, the crest of the wave is beginning 
to curl over, ready to break into foam and spray, but 
the dolphins with wide-open jaws and a twinkling 
look of delight about them somewhere, just escape. 

Still confining our attention to the north room, we 
come to the Hon. John Collier's ably painted portraits 
of ' Mrs. Harold Roller and Joyce Collier ' ; and 
further on to those of ' Mrs. Hardy ' and ' The late 
Mrs. Craik, authoress of John Halifax,' painted by 
Professor Herkomer, who, almost more than any other 
painter, studies the individual character of his sitters, 
placing his men and women so as to express their 
personality and not to cramp it by a stereotyped pose. 
Besides these portraits of women he exhibits in 
another room one of ' Sir Joseph Hooker,' the botanist, 
and one of ' Thomas Chilton, Esq.' Mr. H. Herkomer 
runs the ' Professor' very close in a splendidly lifelike 
study of ' C. Hubert Pany, Esq., Mus. Doc.,' which 
hangs in the west room. Mr. J. J. Shannon, on the 
other hand, seems tending to the superficial and ' pot- 
boiling ' in portraiture ; for if his ably painted and 
interesting study of ' Mrs. Sidgwick ' seems to belie 
this statement one has but to look at the treatment of 
' Miss Jean Graham,' and his two Grosvenor exhibits 
of ' Mrs. Tower ' and the ' Marchioness of Granby,' to 
be convinced that his cleverness is exhausted in the 
realisation of tulle and satin draperies, in a way not 
calculated to win the lovers of art, however it may 
charm the soul of fashion. 

Still in quest of portraits, one easily recognises the 
sardonic visage of ' Edmund Yates, Esq.,' looking out 
from a medley of flowers, Japanese figures, proofs, etc., 
painted by Cecil M. Round, and those by Mr. E. A. 
Ward, which are clever, and painted with crispness 
and force, but somewhat lacking in the human attri- 
bute of flesh texture, a blemish which in time may 
perchance be cured. Among these we see 'John 
Tenniel, Esq.,' and ' Mr. Joseph Chamberlain,' with his 
favourite flower at hand, and a print of Lord Beacons- 
field as a background. Mr. W. B. Richmond's por- 
traits have their normal picturesque quality, and are 
sweet in an unearthly waxen way. Besides them, he 
exhibits a classic theme of the ' Death of Ulysses.' 
H. H. Lathangue's clever experiment by lamplight, 
' A Portrait of Mrs. Tom Mitchell,' is a repetition on a 
larger scale of the same idea he essayed last year, just 
as his smaller work, entitled ' A Study,' of a girl in grey 
sitting out of doors, against a very definite background 
of green apple-boughs and a sunlit cornfield, is a 
second variation of his last year's motif. 

Of Mr. Alma-Tadema's portraits it is enough to say 
that his sitters are painted as if they were made of 
marble, so polished and superfine are their exteriors ; 
but in his charming little subject called ' A Favourite 
Author' his textures happily adjust themselves to their 
proper places. Close by these hang Mr. E. J. Poynter's 
refined ' Roman Boat Race,' and ' The Ramparts of 
God's House,' a Burne-Jonesian rhapsody by Mr. 
Burne-Jones's disciple, Mr. E. M. Strudwick, and 



painted with much of the master's deliberate sweetness 
of colour and fancy. Afar, one sees Mr. Batten's large 
and unsatisfactory canvas ' The Doom of Loki ' ; two 
of Mr. J. W. North's tender and poetic landscapes, ' A 
Sweet Meadow in England,' in which ' the flowers 
fresh, and branch, and bloom ' in the soft sunshine of 
a June day, and ' When Wheat is Green ' ; some ' Polar 
Bears Swimming,' by John M. Swan, as original in its 
way and as clever as his Academy picture of the 
' Prodigal Son ' ; ' Daffodils,' by Mrs. Swan ; ' Vates,' a 
sentimentalism by C. E. Halle, whose little picture oi 
'The Lvire' — hanging in the south room — is tenderly 
drawn and delicately imagined ; a disappointing head 
by Holman Hunt, called ' Sorrow ' ; two misty land- 
scapes by Professor Legros ; an 'Early Moonrise,' by 
Keeley Halswelle, which leaves one in doubt in look- 
ing at it whether one likes it or not, and quite a ' show 
of Watts' s. There are at least four or five of Mr. 
Watts's canvases, one of which, ' The Study of a 
Wounded Heron,' is interesting as being the first thin 
exhibited by him in 1837- His 'Sea Ghost,' which 
depicts a phantom ship glimmering on a vague white 
sea, with the iridescent arc of the ' Aurora ' in the 
misty air, being dream-like and poetic ; ' Fata Mor- 
gana,' evidently suggested by the allegory of Fortune 
in Bojardo's Orlando Innamorato, is, on the contrary, 
unhappy, and hard in colour, and, despite its artistic 
spirit and poetic intent, wanting in tone. 

In a brief survey such as this it is impossible to give 
anything like an exhaustive review of the work in the 
Gallery ; still it may be better than nothing to men- 
tion by name a few of the most interesting or artistic 
productions. Obviously among the landscapes 'The 
Wet West Wind,' by Adrian Stokes, and Mr. Edward 
Stott's ' Snow on the Hills ' and ' Nature's Mirror,' tell 
out on the score of artistic suggestion and good tone ; 
as indeed do Mr. Alfred East's landscapes, only that the 
moonlight ' business ' he has so persistently painted for 
the last season or two is, I think, beginning to be 
played out, otherwise his ' Evening Star ' is tender 
with atmospheric beauty and the poetry of twilight, as 
his themes ever are. One carps, not at the artistic 
quality with which they are intended, but at the 
monotony of the idea : could not Mi-. East invest a 
'Suni'ise' or a 'Dawn,' when 

' . . . the dews that drench the furze, 
And all the silvery gossamers 
. . . twinkle into green and gold,' 

with some of the like poetry of thought? A few 
among the most notable canvases are the land and sea 
scapes scattered about the different rooms, such as ' A 
Back-water,' ' On Mendip,' and ' In June,' all ably 
painted, it is needless to say, by Alfred Parsons ; 
' Homeward Bound/ by Ernest Paton ; ' Adrift,' and 
' A Fisherman's Harbour,' by Napier Hemy ; ' Coming 
into Port — Venice,' by Miss C. Montalba ; ' A Hazy 
Morning,' by H. Dalziel ; 'Fair Mill on the Nake,' by 
Colin Himter; 'Mackerel in the Bay,' by David Carr ; 
' Solitude,' by Herbert Snell ; ' Evening,' by M. R. 



THE GROSVENOR EXHIBITION 



Corbett ; ' In a Coign of the Cliff,' by Mrs. C. N. Ken- 
nedy ; ' The Skipping Rope,' by Miss Armstrong ; and 
a warm, rich effect of colour, 'Autumn,' by Edward 
Fahey. 

After a glance at the Balcony, where hang Professor 
Legros's studies in silver-point, the chalk drawings and 
designs by Burne-Jones, and a few of Du Maurier's 
pen and ink sketches, I took a hasty glance at ' A 
Tangle of Poppies,' cleverly painted by Mrs. Emily 
Williams ; ' The Narrow Way,' and ' Dies Itse,' by 
William Padgett ; and Miss Helen Cridland's ' In the 



Firelight,' which is far too good to be ' skied ' ; a bust 
in marble of the ' Clytie,' by Mr. G. F. Watts; and 
lastly, another look at the ' Lady Macbeth,' and Mr. 
Swan's ' Polar Bears,' who 

' . . . were the first that ever burst 
Into that silent sea,' 

before going out of the sunny galleries across the cool 
fountained court, with its ferns and golden-eyed 
daisies, into the practical outside world, whose distant 
hum scarcely penetrated the walls of this pleasant 
haunt of itstheticism. 



THE GROSVENOR EXHIBITION. 



THIS is a very nice Exhibition indeed, though not 
by any means great. It perhaps will not be 
j)opular with the more ingenuously ignorant of the 
public, but it is worth going to. The Hanging Com- 
mittee may for the most part be congratulated on 
what they had to deal with, though some sympathy 
must be extended them on account of things they 
were perforce obliged to hang — to say nothing of the 
inipleasing necessity of pleasing Academicians with 
places on the line more rightfully due to others 
which are skied. In this connection may be noted 
Alfred Hartley's ' Peaceful Eventide ' (7), with its 
sense and chastened feeling for nature, which hangs 
above the exaggerated forcible-feeble piece of false 
scene-painting by J. MacWhirter, A.R.A., whose 
' Weird Sisters,' three purposeless monstrosities of 
trees, stand without composition in a badly painted 
plain against a worse sky. 

J. Buxton Knight's work is almost always worth 
looking at, on account of its cleverness. No. 9, ' The 
Marsh,' with a raised waterway, is no exception ; and 
near it Arthur Melville's ' Laban ' — a low-toned sketch 
of sheep and the shepherd — is very smart, though 
hard. 

It is rather painful to have to speak severely of a 
man who is universally praised, but it really is time 
for Mr. J. J. Shannon to pause and think if he is not 
doing too many portraits. He is at the turning-point 
of his career. Some of this year's work shows evident 
signs of over-elaboration in the heads ; it gets cramped, 
and even dry. 'Lady Granby' (17) is very good in 
design and feeling, but the colour is distinctly bad. 
Where did the painter see these browns in flesh ? Yet 
it is admirable in many ways, and is a sympathetic 
note of a strange personality. 

Mr. Margetson, a young man, sends ' Miss Ellen 
Terry as Lady Macbeth ' in the sleep-walking scene. 
It is clever, with its well-managed greys, but the head 
is no more than a mask. 

Mr. J. Lavery sends ' Eurydice ' (o6), which seems 
good, but it is abominably skied. 

This is a year of moons in landscape. Every painter 
has become an Endymion, and worships her in all her 
VOL. n. 



shapes — crescent, ribbons, or full. She rises or sets 
in all the galleries, apparently without any gross dis- 
regard of astronomical science ; which she has not 
always been wont to do in fiction or on canvas. Mr. 
Laidlay paints her rising over water and reeds with 
fine effect in 57. 

In the east gallery is Mr. Dendy Sadler's ' Darby 
and Joan' (121). It is almost too clever, and will not 
appeal to all. For those who like such dining-room 
interiors, with a slightly suggested story, it will be 
good. 

Mr. John Reid is big this year. He has four very 
noticeable things. In spite of this artist's almost in- 
numerable faults — mannerism in colour, scrappiness of 
composition, falseness in tone — there is something in 
all his work which is good. There is feeling in it, and 
richness. It is a pity he grows so very mannered. His 
pictures are 128, 14.1, 208, 214, and shoidd all be 
looked at. 

James Charles sends 'The Youngest' (lt>2) — 
a portrait of a very infant, which is wonderfully 
painted. George Clausen's 'Ploughing' (174) is 
wonderfully fine, and true in tone and character. Yet 
it was hardly necessary to select a horse with such a 
stiff' action. It is correct, we believe, but it is not 
pleasing. W. Llewellyn sends a Cornish evening 
scene, which will force attention, but his best work 
here is a portrait of Mrs. Hennessy (179)- The lady 
stands in a dignified natural pose, and is full of cha- 
racter. The painting is very dexterous, though we 
would willingly have seen the pattern of the dress a 
little more subdued. But the portrait is a distinct 
success. 

This notice in such limits cannot include a tenth 
part of the things worth seeing ; but Mrs. Markham 
Skipworth, Mr. J. Swan, Mr. Anderson Hague, Miss 
C. Montalba, Mr. F. Brangwyn, Mrs. Waller, Mr. 
Jacomb-Hood, Miss W. J. Hennessy, Mr. East, and Mr. 
Yeend King, among others, send work which is notice- 
able either for dexterity of technique, for colour, or for 
fine feeling. Unhappily the last quality is the rarest. 
It would seem invidious to say who of these possesses 
most. 



10 



THE SCOTTISH AKT REVIEW 



PARIS CAUSERIE. 



THREE FRENCH POETS. 

ABOUT thirty years ago a group of 3'oung poets, 
who styled themselves the Faritassiens, began 
to be spoken of in Parisian literary circles. The 
ideal of these sons of Apollo was to attain absolute 
perfection of ' form,' combined with faultless prosody 
in their versification. They adopted as their model 
and master the ' impeccable ' poet, M. Leconte de 
Lisle, whose sonorous rhymes, pure style, and origin- 
ality had already excited the admiration of the select 
few who were not dazzled by the glory of Victor 
Hugo's genius. They found a publisher in Lemerre, 
then a small bookseller in the Passage Choiseul, who, 
wonderful to relate, made poetry pay to the extent of 
making a moderate fortune for himself, and also for a 
chosen few among the leading Parnassians, three of 
whom now sit in the midst of the Immortals at the 
Acaderaie Fran9aise : MM. Francois Coppee, Leconte 
de Lisle, and Sully Prudhomme. 

M. Coppee is the most popular of the three. He was 
only eighteen years of age when some fugitive jiieces 
he published began to attract attention. In 1866 
appeared his first volume of poems Lc Reliquairc, which 
established his reputation as a poet of great promise. 
Three years later his exquisite scenario Le Passant was 
played at the Odeon, and met with such success that 
next day he was a celebrated man ; all Paris raved 
about the young poet as well as about a new and 
suddenly revealed dramatic star — Mile. Sarah Bern- 
hardt, hitherto an obscure debutante, now — thanks to 
the poet's sweet verses, her own sweet voice, and 
clever acting — a celebrity. M. Coppee has written 
a great deal ; poems of an easy, familiar, and graceful 
form ; charming tales in prose, and dramatic works of 
deep interest. He is often called ' the poet of the 
humble,' in allusion to his poems on the familiar, 
commonplace events of everyday life. The following- 
short j)oem is a good specimen of his style : — 

' Le soir, au coin du feii, j'ai pense bieii des fois 
A la molt d'lin oiseau, quelque part, dans les bois. 
Pendant les tristes jouis de I'hiver monotone, 
Les pauvres nids deserts, les nids que Ton abandonne, 
Se balancenl au vent sur le ciel gris de fer. 
Oh ! comme les oiseau.x doivent mourir I'hiver ! 
Pourtant, lorsque viendra le temps des violettes 
Nous ne trouverons pas leurs delicats squelettes 
Dans le gazon d'avril, oil nous irons courir — 
Kst-ce que les oiseaux se cachent pour mourir ? ' 

M. Coppee is a dramatic poet of no mean talent ; 
Severn Torreli, a Venetian drama, achieved great suc- 
cess at the Odeon, also the Luihier dc Cremnne, played 
at the Fran9ais ; his masterpiece is probably Les 
Jacobites, a drama founded on an episode of the rising 
of ni5. Two characters in this drama, those of the 
old blind harper Angus and his daughter, are remark- 



ably poetical and noble, while Charles Edward, his 
faithful followers and their surroundings, are very 
ably portrayed. Les Jacobites, as well as M. Coppee's 
other poems and prose writings, deserve to be better 
known by English and Scotch readers, for they possess 
the great merit of being as pure in tone as they are in 
spirit, a rare recommendation in French contemporary 
literature. In February 188-i M. Coppee was received 
into the Academic Fran9aise amidst the applause of 
his numerous friends and admirers, for he is not only a 
charming poet, but the most amiable of men. 

If M. Coppee is the most popular of the Parnassian 
group, M. Sully Prtidhomme is probably the most 
exquisitely refined in sentiment and verse ; he is prin- 
cipally known as the author of two sonnets, two poeti- 
cal gems : ' Le vase brise,' and ' Le meilleur moment 
des amours.' I quote the latter as the most perfect 
specimen of his style : — 

' Le meilleur moment des amours 
N'est pas quand on a dit : Je t'aime. 
II est dans le silence meme 
A demi rompu tous les jours ; 

II est dans les intelligences 
Promptes et furtives des cceurs ; 
II est dans les feintes rigueurs 
Et les secretes indulgences ; 

II est dans le frisson du bras 
Oil se pose la main qui tremble, 
Dans la page qu'on tourne ensemble, 
Et que pourtant on ne lit pas. 

Heure unique oil la bouche close 
Par sa pudeur seul en dit tant ! 
Oil le creur s'ouvre en eclatant 
Tout bas, comme un bouton de rose. 

Oil le parfum seul des cheveu.\ 
Parait une faveur conquise . . . 
Heure de tendresse exquise 
Oil les respects sont des aveu.v ! ' 

M. Sully Prudhomme published his first volume in 
1865, and since then he has written 'Les Epreuves,' 
' La Justice,' and other exquisite poems, but nothing 
superior to the above. His election, in 1881, to the 
vacant seat of M. Duvergier de Hauranne at the 
Academic Fran9aise was a just tribute paid to a poet 
of merit and most refined taste. 

M. Leconte de Lisle, ' the impeccable master,' as 
his disciples style him, ranks as the greatest of living 
French poets since the death of Victor Hugo, whose 
seat, by a strange coincidence, he now occupies at the 
Academic. Proud, disdainful of the plaudits of the 
multitude, he has always dwelt in the lofty regions of 
pure testhetics, somewhat after the fashion of the 
Buddha he has glorified in his poems. His first woi'k, 
Poemes Barbares, was published in 1856, about the same 
time as Victor Hugo's Lemnde des Siccles. It is easy 



PARIS CAUSERIE 



11 



to understand how ccci a liic vela, and that the efful- 
gence of Hugo's epic poem cast the lesser poetical 
light in the shade. But it was precisely the sobi-iety 
of treatment of his subject, the correctness of form, 
and the intense con- 
centration of poetic 
effect which are to be 
found in M. Leconte 
de Lisle's writings that 
attracted the new-born 
Parnassians and made 
them go to him as the 
fountain-head of true 
poetry. It would take 
more space than we 
have at disposal to 
dwell at any length 
on the works of this 
poet, for he has sung 
in noble strains the 
song of Humanity from 
the days of 'Kain' 
(a splendid poem, 
which at times re- 
calls Prometheus) ; 
he has sought inspira- 
tion in the primitive 
poems of India, the 
Greek poets, the Vedas, 
the Scandinavian Sa- 
gas, and even episodes 
of the late Franco- 
German war. In all 
the same strain pre- 
vails, that of a noble 
form of pessimism, the 
idea that man is born 
to suffering and sor- 
row, that all is vanity, 
and that all pleasure 
ends in pain; nowhere 

in his woi'ks is this better expressed than in the 
cry of despair of the Brahmin in the poem entitled 
' Baghavat ' : — 

* Une plainte est au fond ties rumeurs des nuits, 
Lamentation large et souffrance inconnue 
Qui monte de la terre et roule dans la niie ; 
Soupir du globe errant dans I'eternel chemin, 
Mais efface toujours par le soupir liumain. 
Sombre douleur de Tliomme, 6 voix triste et profonde, 
Plus forte que les bruits innombrables du monde, 
Cri de I'ame, sanglot du cceiir supplicie. 
Qui t'entends sans fremir d'amour et de pitie ? 
Qui ne pleure sur toi, magnanime faiblesse. 
Esprit qu'un aiguillon divin excite et blesse, 
Qui t'ignores toi-meme et ne peux te saisir, 
Et, sans borner jamais Timpossible desir, 
Durant I'humaine nuit qui jamais ne s'acheve, 
N'embrasse I'infini qu'en un sublime reve ! . . . 
O conquerant vaincu, qui ne pleure sur loi ? ' 

M. Leconte de Lisle was too proud to make any 




advances to the Academic, he would not condescend 
to make the obligatoiy visit every candidate is bound 
to make to the Academicians in order to solicit their 
vote in his own favour, so he remained a long time at 

the door, while men 
of lesser worth filled 
in turn each vacant 
seat. 

But when Victor 
Hugo's seat became 
vacant, it was evident 
that no one but the 
author of Poimes An- 
liijues was worthy to 
occupy it, so in Febru- 
ary 1886 M. Leconte 
de Lisle was elected 
member of the Acade- 
mic Fran9aise. The 
nomination was the 
consecration of a long 
and honoured career, 
during which the poet, 
though poor, had never 
consented to pander to 
the passing taste of the 
day, or seek for any of 
the many remunerative 
honours he might so 
easily have obtained. 
He resides in a small 
apartment close to the 
Luxembourg, for he 
occupies the post of 
Librarian of the Senate. 
A noble - looking old 
man of seventy and one 
summers, he is sur- 
rounded by the respect 
and sympathy of all 
who have had the good 
fortune of making his acquaintance. 

Round these three planets of the modern French 
Parnassus gravitate stars of lesser brilliancy, yet not to 
be forgotten. M. de Banville, the author of the Odes 
Fumimhulesqiies, of many charming comedies in verse, 
and of a cleverly written Petit Iraite dc pocsiejhiiigaise. 
M. Jose Maria de Heredia, whose sonnets are perfect, 
and of whom Theophile Gautier once said : ' Heredia, 
je t'aime parce que tu portes un nom exotique et 
sonore et parce que tu fais des vers qui se recourbent 
comme des lambrequins heraldiques.' M. CatuUe 
Mendes, who claims to have been the founder of 
the Parnassian group, and M. Armand Sylvestre 
both have written many charming verses, but in 
an evil hour the worship of the Golden Calf has 
led them to journalism and unsavouiy literature, 
to the great detriment of their uncontested poetic 
talent. 



12 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



THE SALON: THE EXHIBITION. 

Paris, May \^th. 

On the occasion of a visit M. Grevy paid to the 
Salon a few years since, M. Bouguereau, who was 
showing the then President of the Republic through 
the rooms, is said to have observed : ' This year's 
Salon, M. le President, does not contain any work 
of transcendental merit, but it testifies in its en- 
semhle of serious efforts and some progress. . , .' 
' That is,' interrupted 
M. Grevy in his sen- 
tentious way, 'just as 
it should be under a 
wisely - organised de- 
mocracy. We do not 
want individualities ot 
too great power or 
merit, but it is consol- 
ing to see a fair aver- 
age display of talent.' 
The Salon of 18S9, 
although it contains 
no work of transcen- 
dental merit, shows us 
something more than 
a democratic average 
of talent. Among the 
5055 exhibits of paint- 
ing and sculpture are 
to be found many 
works which prove 
that the rising genera- 
tion of artists are not 
only intent on master- 
ing the technique of 
their art, but that they 
are gradually penetrat- 
ing deeper and deeper 
into the great secret 
of Nature and her evei'- 
changing forms. This 
is particularly notice- 
able among the mem- 
bers of the plehi air 
school. For instance, 
M. Roll's 'En ete" 
is a beautiful compo- 
sition full of glow- 
ing sunlight and air. In an orchard where the rank 
grass grows deep, a lady and a girl, both dressed in 
light summer attire, a little boy, and a shaggy terrier 
dog, are running about enjoying the fresh air and 
freedom from all restraint ; the play of golden light 
on the fair hair and blooming complexion of the two 
female figures is charming ; this picture is essentially 
what the French term iDie page liimineuse. Another 
equally pleasing picture by the same artist is that of 
a boy palling at a bull with a rope, tlie scene — a 




^ l^fi^^ITa/i^ 



meadow. In these two pictures M. Roll has attained 
at last the mature and full development of an ideal he 
has been pursuing for some years past. Another good 
specimen o{ pleiii idr, though of course not to be com- 
pared to M. Roll, is Mr. James Guthrie's ' Orchard.' 
This artist is a native of Glasgow ; his debut is 
certainly a promising one. Speaking of countrymen, 
Mr. Lavery has sent two pictures which are not want- 
ing in talent : one is an incident in the adventurous 
life of Queen Mary ; the other, entitled ' La Conva- 

lescente,' represents a 
lady recovering from 
a severe illness ; — let 
us hope that next year 
we shall see her quite 
restored to health and 
improved in appear- 
ance. Mr. Carter ex- 
hibits a charming por- 
trait of ' Miss Gray.' 
But to return to plein 
air, a very remarkable 
specimen of the new. 
style is contributed 
by M. A. Zorn, a 
Swedish ai-tist ; it is 
very appropriately en- 
titled 'A I'Air,' and 
represents some 
women bathing. The 
predominating colour 
is grey, but there, are 
some very cleverly 
painted effects of light 
and shade playing on 
the nude torsos of the 
women, who have just 
come out of the water. 
M. Besnard's ' Une 
Sirene,' although she 
possesses none of the 
traditional charms at- 
tributed to her sisters, 
is a very remarkable 
production, full of 
talent and difficulties 
boldly attacked and 
overcome. This pic- 
ture is one of the best 
abused and most admired exhibits in this year's Salon ; 
it is certainly one of the most ' typical ' pictures yet 
exhibited by the talented artist whose works are 
' caviare to the multitude.' The best picture in the 
Salon, the one which ought to carry off the 'medaille 
d'honneur,' is M. Dagnan's ' Bretonnes au pardon.' 
In the foreground seven women, old and joung, are 
seated in a circle on the grass, two peasants are stand- 
ing behind them, in the background are to be seen 
the figures of other worshippers and the steeple of a 



4^ 



SCULPTURE AT THE SALON. 



13 



humble Breton village church. They have evidently 
already heard early morning mass, and are waiting 
patiently for another service and the sermon. Their 
faces express the same expression of deep religious 
faith still to be found among the peasants of Brittany, 
while their black dresses and white-winged caps impart 
to their general appear- 
ance something quite 
monastical. In the 
simplicity of treatment 
of his subject, in the 
utter absence of arti- 
fice, in the plain, sub- 
dued colouring, in the 
masterly, unhesitating, 
bold touches of the 
brush, M. Dagnan has 
proved himself defini- 
tively a master paintei-. 
The same artist also 
exhibits a ' Madonna,' 
a work of quite dif- 
ferent style, full ot 
charm, but more mo- 
dern in its general ex- 
pression, with a ten- 
dency to a certain 
phantasy of colouring 
very interesting to 
artists and connois- 
seurs who can appreci- 
ate the difficulties over- 
come by the painter. 
There are many other 
works of importance 
and interest in the 
Salon, but the limited 
character of these notes 
will not allow me even 
to mention them ; be- 
sides, I have only men- 
tioned the above as 
characteristic pictures. 

The Exhibition, though still in a very unfinished 
state, has been opened this week, and it may at once 
be said that the decorative effect of the three domes 
and annexes, the happy combination of bricks, decor- 
ative iron-woi'k, imitation majolica, polychroma decora- 
tion inside and outside the building, produce altogether 
a pleasant and gay appearance. The palace of arts is 
elegant in design, and will be very artistic in appear- 
ance when the mural decorations are finished and the 





panels hung with tapestry. The art exhibitions of the 
various nations are being gradually set in order ; that 
of Great Britain, though small, promises to be very 
interesting; the French decennial exhibition of paint- 
ing and sculpture will be very fine, while Austro- 
Hungary, Spain, and even Germany, have sent a 

choice of the best of 
their modern pictures. 
Even the Eiffel Tower 
looks picturesque ! I 
can well remember the 
cry of horror and indig- 
nation uttered by the 
Parisian artistic world 
two years ago when the 
first plans of the tower 
appeared, how a pro- 
test was signed by all 
the leading artists, and 
addressed to the 
Government and the 
Municipal Council, 
' supplicating ' them 
not to allow the erec- 
tion of the iron mon- 
ster, which would dwarf 
all the monuments of 
the capital and make 
Paris a byword among 
all people of taste. 
Well, now it is finished, 
one and all are aston- 
ished to find that 
though it is not exactly 
a thing of beauty, nor 
likely to prove a joy 
for ever, yet it is not 
an eyesore. The other 
night, when decorated 
with innumerable elec- 
tric lamps, and power- 
ful flashes, red, white, 
and blue lights, pro- 
jecting from its cupola for miles and miles away into 
the darkness of night, it was an impressive sight ; and, 
lastly, when it was illuminated from base to summit 
by the glare of innumerable red Bengal fires, it looked 
like a huge weird monster, the Moloch monument 
typical of this epoch of blood and iron, a sight worthy 
of poor Dore's fantastic pencil. C. Nicholson. 

[The above porlrails are talcen from photographs e.\-ecuted by 
E. Pirou, photographer to the French Academy, B'ti St. Germain.] 



/._ 



SCULPTURE AT THE SALON. 

WHETHER or not it be due to the Latin sense opinion— it is obvious to any student of art that there 
of form— a sense not materially affected by is less fluctuation, from a high standard, in French 
the ebb and flow of any mere current of artistic sculpture than in French painting, or indeed in that 



14 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



of any other country- Year after year the same high 
level of work is to be found in the statuar}' exhibited 
in the central court of the Salon. This year is no 
exception to the rule. Naturally there are banalities, 
but it is impossible not to note the excellent model- 
ling, artistic selection of subject, beauty of line, and 
dexterity of manipulation characteristic of seven- 
tenths of the whole. 

The only rival to the by no means infrequent 
horrors on the walls of the picture rooms is an alto- 
relievo of the suicide of Judas Iscariot by means of 
hanging. It is very realistic in treatment, but not 
artistic. Under the class of realistic work, the most 
notable example is the fine ' Lassitude ' of J. A. 
Jouant, instinct with the inexpressible but none the 
less definite sense of intimate kinship with toiling 
humanity. An old peasant, with the flesh wrinkled on 
his bones, with knotted muscles and vein-swelled hands, 
stands, resting wearily, faint with unending toil for 
others, and without hope of rest, — ' Ce soir, demain, 
toujour. Bon homme, sans repos.' Very fine also is E. C. 
Houssin's ' Glaneuse,' a strong lissome girl in simple 
country garb, who stoops to pick up the ears of corn as 
she passes along with swinging sti'ides. To this class 
belong also Douglas Tilden's clean-limbed, keen-eyed 
young athlete in the act of throwing the baseball, the 
American national pastime, according to the catalogue ; 
' Age sans pitie,' by G. Dubois, a mischievous boy 
intent upon pulling the wings off a butterfly, and 
F. Moreau's very fine ' La Guepe,' which a naked boy 
with anxious solicitude flicks off his left leg. W. 
Bartlett has evidently studied the war-dance of the 
' Wild West ' to some purpose ; his ' Indien dansant ' is 
most happily accidental in its characteristic pose. 

In point of imagination there is nothing among the 
pictures to equal, certainly not to excel, the most note- 
worthy works of sculpture — particularly among which 
may be mentioned M. Ferrary's ' Decollation de Saint 
Jean-Baptiste,' and E. Christophe's ' Baiser Supreme.' 
In both the conception is adequately carried out. The 
upright stern figure in the former of the turbaned 
executioner with half-veiled face, holding with one 
hand his sword and the head of his victim, whose 
body lies prone at his feet, is noble, reserved, and 
very striking. In M. Ferrary's work a higher reach of 
imagination is touched. The artist formed his inspira- 
tion in the following lines by M. Leconte de Lisle : — 

' Heureiix qui, possedant la chimere eternelle, 
Livre an monstre divin im ccEur ersanglante 
Et savoure. Pour mieux s'aneantir en elle 
L'extase de la mort et de la volupte 
Dans I'eclair d'un baiser qui vaut I'eteinite.' 

The ideal is represented by a Sphinx, whose embrac- 



ing claws tear the flesh of the aspirant, who, with 
body strained in physical agony, strives towards the 
fulfilment of his life's aspiration, but only, if at all, to 
triumph at the moment of supreme surrender-. 

None could fail to be impressed by the nude 
herculean Titan by Ringel d'lllzac, entitled ' Sa 
Majeste le Hasard.' The gigantic figure stands with 
one foot — a cloven hoof — on the back of an ape, which 
embraces a mask whose forked tongue coils round a 
scroll — the tongue of oblivion obliterating human 
history. King Chance, with a face wherein evil and 
good are strangely blended, holds a jester's bells in one 
hand, while with the other he raises a spiked crown 
from his head. 

There are several charming examples of fanciful 
sculpture, single figures in most instances, notably 
F. M. Charpentier's ' La Chanson,' aiiy and graceful, 
but not equal to his fine ' Jeanne d'Arc ' of 1887 ; ' La 
Danseuse,' by H. J. Gouache, poised lightly in 
seductive movement, holding a thyrsis in one upraised 
hand; 'La Comedie' of H. E. AUouard, a beautiful 
draped smiling figure, book in hand, with the customary 
mask lying at her feet ; and a delicately modelled, 
simple, unconscious ' Eve,' by M. Marqueste. 

This being the Centenary of the French Revolution, 
there are naturally one or two statues in commemora- 
tion thereof, such as E. Chaterousse's appropriate but 
commonplace ' L'Histoire inscrivant le Centenaire ' on 
the annals of Fame. More interesting are the portraits 
of MM. Carnot, grandsire and grandson, typical 
republicans. The bronze bust of the President, 
M. Sadi Carnot, is the work of L. E. Cougny ; 
,1. Turcan has modelled in life size the seated figure ot 
the elder Carnot ; and the features of that famous 
revolutionary herald, ' Le Patriai'che de Fernev,' are 
admirably reproduced in marble by Emile Lambert. 

I noticed one or two excellent animal studies. The 
finest is a small bronze of a wounded lioness, who, 
transfixed by two arrows, painfully drags onwards her 
hinder quarters. It is from the studio of C. Valton. 
A. L. V. Geoff'roy has modelled with great sympathy 
and knowledge a fine group of a lion and lioness play- 
ing with and carressing one anotlxer. ^'ery natural 
also is a hungry dog with his foot on a captured bone, 
snarling at threatened interference, the production of 
M. de Roflignac, who has given it the appropriate 
motto, ' Laissez-moi tranquille.' 

I have mentioned, of course, but a small number of 
the many exhibits of interest in the Sculpture Gallery, 
yet feel assured that nothing will be found to surpass, in 
particular, the ' Baiser Supreme,' the ' Decollation de 
Saint Jean-Baptiste,' and ' Lassitude,' three truly re- 
markable works. 



STREET ARCHITECTURE. 



WHATEVER the ingenious sophists who ruled 
Edinburgh intellect in the earlier decade of the 
present century may have said or written, there can be 



no doubt that the laws of Beauty in Nature and Art 
are as certain and as indisputable as Mathematics and 
Morals. The true, the good, and the beautiful are 



STREET ARCHITECTURE 



16 



the three equally divine manifestations of the eternal 
self-existent, self-energising plastic Reason whom all 
peoples justly call God. Architecture, of course, as a 
small mimic foi-m of the grand architectural structure 
of the cosmos, depends for its effect on the same prin- 
ciples that regulate the physical and the moral world : 
and of these principles, as has often been said, the 
most general expression is that of unity in variety. It 
is easy to find in the works of man, and especially 
in architecture, unity without variety, which means 
meagreness, baldness, and monotony, and, on the other 
hand, variety without unity, which means an ambitious 
oddity or a pretentious confusion ; but the happy union 
of both is extremely rare, and not at all surprising in 
a product like street architecture, where utility and 
individual whim act in habitual disregard of any rea- 
soned scheme of the Beautiful. But this chapter, so 
rich in magnificent blunders and senseless fancies, is 
too large for exposition here : I confine myself at pre- 
sent to one great point of beauty in street display, 
viz. the effect of contrast in the reciprocal action of 
town on country and country on town. Every artist 
knows how light can never produce a truly artistic 
effect -without the antagonising accent of shade ; and 
in the moral world never does virtue approve itself so 
divinely fair as when confronted with \ice. Acting on 
this principle, the street architect will endeavour, 
wherever possible, to plant his array of well-compacted 
stones, which we call houses, in such an attitude that 
they may command the greatest possible amount of free 
rural prospect with the greatest urban convenience. 
Of course the realisation of this most effective contrast 
depends in a great measure on situation, — so much so, 
indeed, that it is impossible for a city like Berlin, 
situated on a dead level, to rank high among metro- 
politan beauties. However cunningly such a city may 
contrive to combine the styles of masonic decoration 
that give variety to long lines of high-piled masoniy, 
it cannot possibly feed the eye with the charm of a 
grand outlook, or a pleasing peej) into the fresh 
greenery, the ample leafage, and the picturesque fea- 
tures of the country. Now, of all towns that I know 
— and I have seen not a few in my day — from London 
to Petersburg and Cairo, there is none so graciously 
provided by nature with such opportunity of seeing and 
being seen as our Scottish Edinburgh ; and though 
nothing is more easy in the haphazai-d growth of large 
cities than to block a fine outlook, or to throw a blind 
on a prominent beauty, this has happily not been done 
to any noteworthy extent in the Modern Athens. 
Strangers coming from the west would doubtless have 
been very much pleased, if the palatial array of buildings 
in Randolph Crescent, Ainslie Place, and Moray Place, 
had looked them in the face, instead of ungraciously 
turning their back at once on the admiring stranger 
and the familiar landscajDe ; but on the whole one feels 
that the natui-al Imes which the nature of the ground 
])oints out have been well preserved in the streets ; and 
there is no town covering so large a space — three miles 
now in diameter — where both the east and west end 



have known to preserve such a rich and various con- 
trast of urban state and rural freedom ; and in this 
view there are four streets to which pre-eminence must 
be given by all impartial judges, viz. Princes Street, 
Regent Terrace, Douglas Crescent, and Belgrave Cres- 
cent. I am sorry that I cannot include in this front 
rank of excellence Moray Place and the adjacent 
streets, in which so many of the bigwigs of the West- 
End delight to dwell ; for, though no doubt many of 
them have the most extensive and pictui-esque views 
from their lordly drawing-rooms, looking westward and 
northward, street architecture, as a matter of externa 
presentment, must be judged like a man whom you 
meet on the street, by its front, and not by its back. 
Now in this regard there is little to be said for Moray 
Place and its aristocratic adjuncts; for not only is 
there no free outlook to that which is not town in the 
town, but the architecture is of that bastard kind, 
unfortunately too conmion, where the external forms 
of Greek architecture are used, without either natural 
indication or structural significance. 

These few remarks I have set down to put the 
reader on the point of view from which the following 
two sonnets seem to have been composed : — 

I. 
EDINUUllGH : PRINCES STKEET. 
Praise Rome who will, and Florence, and the town 
That spreads its sunny crescent to the bay 
Where Caesars loved to bask them, 'neath the sway 
Of green Vesuvius looking grandly down : 
I praise Dunedin in palatial joride 
Of long-drawn streets, and sweep of healthy breeze. 
And castled rock sublime, and prospect wide 
Of lofty Bens and island-fretted seas. 
With slope of gardened greenery, and trees 
In leafy state, and many a i\inding way, 
Where learned lawyers walk, and ladies gay. 
And children sport, and old men sit at ease ; 
And the Old Town looks on the New, and says, 
'Your sires did well : live woi-thy of their praise.' 

II. 
EDINBUKGH : DOUGLAS CKESCENT. 
Praise Princes Street who will : I would not see 
Our dear Edina's fair perfections lessened 
In any point ; but friends will pardon me 
One passing kindly word to Douglas Crescent. 
Where find you such a breezy bright outlook ? 
Not in Hyde Park, and not in Piccadilly ; 
Such wooded ridge, deep dell, and foaming brook, 
That make the London Park look tame and silly ; 
And through the opening of the leafy bowers 
What trim array of dainty homes is seen. 
What grace of turrets, and what pomp of towers ■ 
Topping the sweetness of the daisied green ! 
Here Art and Nature make no hostile face ; 
Each greets the other, and each knows her place. 

John Stuart Blackie. 



16 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



THE THREE PINTOS. 

CARL-MARIA VON WEBER'S UNFINISHED POSTHUMOUS COMIC OPERA. 



ONE of the most amiable traits of character of 
Weber is his neverfailing humour; it sparkles 
in his musical works and in his letters to his wife 
and friends. It is therefore strange that the great 
composer has not presented the world with a repre- 
sentative work of the humorous order, at least none 
worthy of being named along with his romantic 
operas, Freischiltz, Obcron, and Evnjcmihe. The one 
act opera comique, Abu Hassan, the delightful 
parts of Aennchen in Freischidz, Krips in Sylmna, 
Scherasmin in Oberon, and some of his songs, give us 
a tantalising idea of what we could have expected 
from him had he lived to gratify his often expressed 
and as often delayed wish, fondly cherished to the 
very end, of writing a comic opera in the best sense of 
the word. While still occupied with the Freischidz 
score, Weber, who was at that time — since 1817 — con- 
ductor of the Dresden Royal Opera, looked about him 
for a suitable text-book, and at last thought he had 
found it in the production of a Dresden poet, Theodor 
Hell by name. A week or so before the first Freischuls 
performance. The Bride's Contest — this being the 
original title of the book, quickly changed into Die 
drei Pintos by the composer himself — was finally ap- 
proved of The plot, taken from a newspaper novel, 
is simple, not to say silly enough. Don Gaston, a 
frolicsome student, has managed to abstract from a 
thick-skulled young squire, Don Pinto de Fonseca, a 
letter of introduction which the latter was to have 
delivered to the father of lovely Clarissa, an heiress, 
with the object of a speedy matrimonial union. Gas- 
ton, as Pinto No. 2, presents the letter, and ])roposes 
marriage ; but when he discovers that Clarissa is 
passionately but hopelessly enamoured with young 
Don Gomez, he nobly renounces in favour of his rival, 
and even lends aid to a scheme in which the stolen 
letter again plays an important part, and which ends 
in the wedding of Gomez (Pinto No. 3) and Clarissa. 

Poor as it was, the book contained nevertheless some 
elements suitable for nuisical treatment, and Weber set 
himself to work with his usual energy, when a pressing 
order to write the music to Wolff's Preciusa, and a 
professional tour in North Germany and Denmark of 
several months' duration, compelled him to lay aside 
the newly begun score. It was only in the following 
year (1821) that almost all that we possess of The 
Three Pintos was composed, and that consisted of 
nothing but a number of loose sheets scribbled over 
with hieroglyphic music almost illegible, now in 
watery ink, now in pencil, giving often the leading 
voice only, without a bass, sometimes without a trace of 
accompaniment or instrumentation, — altogether 1700 
bars. Fortunately, on a separate sheet of paper which 



served as a cover for the scrawls, full directions were 
given regarding the key and time of all the numbers, 
not only those already sketched, but also those which 
he had not yet committed to paper. It is probably 
this kind of index which led Weber's wife Carolina to 
the erroneous conclusion, which she maintained to the 
last, that a complete score of the opera had been in 
existence. A most diligent search was made for it in 
Dresden, in Paris, and in London, but without result, 
and we have it on the authority and most positive 
assurance of Sir George Smart, in whose house in 
London Weber expired, that no mss. relating to The 
Three Pintos, other than those already described, were 
found among Weber's papers. Had they existed,Weber, 
who was of a communicative nature, would most cer- 
tainly have shown them to his pupil and friend Julius 
Benedict (afterwards Sir Julius), to George Smart, his 
patron, or to Fiirstenau, the famous flute-player, who 
accompanied him on his journey to London. 

On p. 175 and 176 of his book Weber, to which 
our readers are referred. Sir Julius Benedict, the only 
one, if we except Webei-'s wife, who could boast of the 
privilege of having heard the music of The Three 
Pintos as the composer conceived it, has given a full 
account of the seven numbers which we possess of the 
opera. It is fortunate that these fragments are so 
characteristic as to permit us to draw an image of the 
whole work. 

After Weber's premature death in 1826", his widow 
obtained Meyerbeer's solemn and oft-repeated promise 
to complete the unfinished opera. Two French authors, 
MM. Placard and St. George, were charged with re- 
writing the text, but after countless voluntary and 
involuntary delays, justified and groundless excuses, 
Meyerbeer at last in 1852 returned to the dying widow 
the MSS. which he had had in his possession for twenty- 
six years, with a letter avowing his inabilitj' to fulfil 
his pledge. Truth compels us to say that if Meyer- 
beer had ever busied himself with The Three Piidos 
at all, no trace whatsoever of his labours has been 
discovered. All we know is that in 18-i8 he tried 
unsuccessfully to shift the difficult task he had under- 
taken to the shoulders of Sir Julius Benedict, who was 
then the only person alive whose ears had heard the 
charming music, and who would have taken pride in 
attempting the onerous task had he been approached 
twenty years sooner when the sweet melodies were still 
ringing in his ears. (See p. 174 of Benedict's work, 
Weber.) Carolina had died. Her son Max-Maria took 
the precious legacy to Vincenz Lachner and to H. 
Marschner, the two foremost musicians of their time 
in Germany. Both were enchanted with the find, but 
declared themselves unequal to the task. 



THE PORTRAITS OF WALT WHITMAN 



17 



It was reserved to Karl von Weber, an officer in the 
German army, sixty-five years after his great-uncle 
Carl-Maria had composed The Three Piiilox, to pay the 
debt of honour wliich his predecessors had contracted. 
While he managed, with great skill, and without 
destroying the essence of it, to re-write the text-book, 
which had inspired the composei', he was fortunate 
to find in Gustav Mahler, the conductor of the Leipzig- 
Opera, the unselfish artist who had the courage to sink 
his own individuality, to raise the treasure hidden in 
the incomplete scrawls which Weber has left us, to 
content himself with binding together the fragmentary 
links, and to make a setting for the precious jewels in 
the spirit of the genius who had designed them. For 



this setting Mr. Mahler used principally the materials 
which he found in the posthumous works of Weber 
himself; only sparingly did he introduce his own com- 
position, where it was absolutely necessary, and even 
then he made use of the elements gathered in the 
works of the master. 

This strange work is now before the public, who in 
Leipzig as well as in Munich, where Levi made some 
judicious improvements, have with rare unanimity 
sanctioned the bold but pious undertaking. 

Those of our readers who make themselves ac- 
quainted witli the piano score will cherish the wish that 
The Three Piiilos may soon find a place in the repertory 
of the British operatic stage. Emil Clauss. 




THE PORTRAITS OF WALT WHITMAN. 



' My songs cease — I nbandon them ; 
From behind the screen where I hid I advance personally, 

solely to you. 
Camerado ! This is no book ; 
Who touches this, touches a man.' 

WALT WHITMAN has always in his writing 
made his personal presence inevitable, so to 
speak. Indeed, to read Leases of Grass without realis- 
ing the author's visible presence is to only half-know 
the book. There exists now, fortunately, a series of 
photographic and other portraits which give an admir- 
able account of his physical bearing, still unbroken 
under the pains of age and long illness; and it is 



very fit that some of these should be at last collected 
and reproduced at the time when the poet's friends 
are with hearty accord congratulating him on the 
happy advent of his seventieth birthday. 

It would have been interesting if some portrait ol 
Whitman in his youth or early manhood existed and 
could have been given, but the earliest that has sur- 
vived, if indeed any previous ones were taken, is the 
daguerreotype reproduced in the famihar little engrav- 
ing which has appeared successively in so many editions 
of Leaves of Grass. It appeared originally in the rare 
quarto, or rather royal octavo, first edition, published 
in 18.55, when Walt Whitman spoke of himself as 

c 



18 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



'bearded, sun-burnt, grey-neck'd, forbidding.' Dr. 
Maurice Bucke, in his Life of Whilman, thus describes 
this portrait : ' Facing the title is the miniature of a 
man who looks about thirty-five to forty years old. 
He wears a broad-brimmed, wideawake hat, has a 
large forehead, and strongly-marked features. The 
face (to my mind) expresses sadness and good nature. 
The beard is clipped rather short, and is turning grey. 
The figure is shown down to the knees. This is Walt 
Whitman from life in his thirty-sixth year. The pic- 
ture was engraved on steel by M'Rae of New York, 
from a daguerreotype taken one hot day in July 1854 
by Gabriel Harrison of Brooklyn.' Elsewhere we learn 
— I do not remember at the moment whether from 
Dr. Bucke, John Burroughs, or Walt Whitman himself 
— that the daguerreotype was taken one day as the poet 
was returning with some companions from a hayfield 
where they had been at work. This accounts, of 
course, in part for the rough-and-ready guise in which 
he is represented, though, as his readers know, his 
attire was never conventional. The portrait reappeared 
in the second edition, published in 1856 ; in the sixth, 
or author's edition, in 1876, and in all subsequent 
editions of the book. Its date gives it a special 
interest, for it shows us Whitman as he was when he 
began Leaves of Grass, before his war experiences had 
crippled his powerful physique, — as he was when he 
said of himself — 

' I now, thirty-seven years old, in perfect health begin, 
Hoping to cease not till death.' 

Following this portrait, the next appears only in the 
third (I860) edition of Leaves uf Grass, — a steel engrav- 
ing from a drawing in oils by Charles Hine, an artist- 
friend of the author. Dr. Bucke speaks of this as 
' one of the most striking and interesting likenesses of 
the poet that has ever been made ' ; but I confess it 
hardly impresses me in the same way. It does not 
make at all the impression made by his other portraits, 
and certainly does not suggest the characteristic ex- 
pression which those who have had the good fortune 
to see the poet expect to find. The portrait has its 
value, however, in showing him at the later stage of 
I860, and on the verge of the Civil War, in which he 
was to play so memorable a part. Whitman himself 
seems to have been dissatisfied with this portrait, for 
it does not appear subsequently, the fourth and fifth 
editions of the book having no portrait. 

Next in order to Hine's portrait we have the draw- 
ing by Herbert Gilchrist, which was made in 1864, 
and which appears as the frontispiece to Dr. Bucke's 
Life. It represents a singularly picturesque old man 
attired in a cloak and the familiar large felt hat, which, 
in this instance, is brought so far forward over the 
brows as to hide the striking arch of the eyebrows and 
the form of the forehead, which have so much to do 
with the imposing effect of the face in other photo- 
graphs. The hands are clasped upon the handle of a 



large staff, so as well to display their great strength. 
In this portrait are clearly to be found traces of the 
emotional strain which Whitman had suffered during 
the war, in 1S64 just over. Indeed, except in the 
powerful grasp of the hands, there is a greater sugges- 
tion of age in this portrait than in some of those made 
at a much later date. 

It is not quite clear from the references in the text 
what date is to be assigned to the engraved portrait 
which appears in the author's edition facing ' The 
Wound-Dresser,' in Drum Taps; but it is probably 
subsequent to the Gilchrist drawing of 1864, and also 
to Whitman's illness. If this be so, then the photo- 
graph which appears as the frontispiece to the second 
volume — Two Rivulets — of the same edition is next 
in order. This bears the inscription : ' Photo'd from 
life, Sept. '72. Brooklyn, N.Y.' It will be remem- 
bered that this was only five months before the attack of 
paralysis which prostrated him in February 187.'5, when 
his occupation lay in a Government Office at Washing- 
ton. In this photograph, half-length, three-quarter 
profile, the figure is not posed as well perhaps as in 
some later ones. Whitman is represented with elbow 
leaning on a table, attired in dark broadcloth, more 
conventionally than was his wont, but with white felt 
hat and loose, open collar as characteristic insignia. 

Next in order probably comes the portrait which 
appears in the author's edition of 1876, inserted in the 
latter part of the first volume, in the series Drum 
Taps, so as to face the poem entitled ' The Wound- 
Dresser.' This shows only the face and part of the 
bust, the face being turned towards the onlooker with 
an anxious, inquiring expression, showing on its features 
the unmistakable careworn marks of service in field 
and hospital. The portrait indeed strikingly comple- 
ments the lines accompanying — 

' An old man bending 1 come among new faces, 
Years looking backward, resuming, in answer to children, 
Co/ne tell us^ old ?naHy as from young men and maidens that love 
me. ' 

The whole piece, with its grim and terrible picture 
of the field of battle, is too long to be given here, but 
the close of it will recall the rest to all who have 
previously read it : — . 

' Thus in silence, in dreams' projections. 
Returning, resuming, 1 thread my way through the hospitals ; 
The hurt and wounded 1 pacify with soothing hand, 
I sit by the restless all the dark night — some are so young ; 
Some suffer so much — I recall the experience sweet and sad ; 
Many a soldier's loving arms about this neck have crossed and 

rested. 
Many a soldier's kiss dwells on these bearded lips.' 

In the second volume of the author's edition, in 
Tivo Kivukls, some lines appear with the special 
inscription — ' To confront my Portrait illustrating " The 
Wound-Dresser" in Leaves of Grass,' part of which — 
enough to give the gist of their suggestive commentary 
upon this portrait — may fitly follow here : — 



THE PORTRAITS OF WALT WHITMAN 



19 



' Out from behind this bending, rough-cut Mask, 
(All straighter, liker iVIasks rejected- this preferr'd,) 
This common curtain of the face, contain'd in me for me, in you 

for you, in each for each, 
(Tragedies, sorrows, laughter, tears — O heaven ! 
The passionate, teeming plays this curtain hid !) 



These burin'd eyes, flashing to you, to pass to future time, 

To launch and spin through space revolving, sideling — from these 

to emanate. 
To you, whoe'er you are — a Look ! 



author, seated out-of-doors in a garden chair, dressed 
in summerly attire of woollen jacket and large som- 
brero, and with loose collar and cuffs turned back, 
holding up on the left hand a large moth. In the first 
English re-issue of this book (Wilson & M'Cormick, 
Glasgow), this portrait appeared as a frontispiece, so 
doing away with its special relevancy to the description 
in the body of the work, without which the portrait 
might well seem somewhat incomprehensible. On the 
opposite page, in the original American edition, is an 




' A traveller of thoughts and years — of peace and war, 
Of youth long sped, and middle age declining, 
(As the first volume of a tale perused and laid away, and this the 

second, 
Songs, ventures, speculations, presently to close,) 
Lingering a moment, here and now, to you I opposite turn, 
As on the road, or at some crevice door, by chance, or open'd 

window. 
Pausing, inclining, baring my head, You specially I greet, 
To draw and clench your soul, for once, inseparably with mine. 
Then travel, travel on.' 

In Whitman's prose work. Specimen Days and CoUeds, 
a reproduction from a photograph is inserted in the 
body of the work which gives a side view of the 



entry which seems to have befen written in the country 
at New Jersey, in August 1878, and which, after 
describing the number of butterflies and moths to be 
found there, goes on to narrate : ' You can tame even 
such insects ; I have one big and handsome moth 
down here knows and comes to me, likes me to hold 
him up on my extended hand.' 

Two years later, in 1880, during Mr. Whitman's visit 
to Dr. Bucke, at London, Ontario, a photograph was 
taken there, at Dr. Bucke's instigation, by a local 
photographer, which seems to me by far the most 
lifelike of all that have appeared. It is reproduced in 
Dr. Bucke's Life of Whilman, facing chap. ii. p. 48, 




'''.v' 






H: 



# 









/-^-^iM 




22 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



wherCj of course, it can easily be turned to. I had not 
clearly remembered this portrait on my visit to Walt 
Whitman a year or more ago, and on first seeing it 
afterwards in the room of a friend who had framed it 
and given it a place of honour in his motley fireside 
art museum of heroic portraits and tobacco-pipes and 
bric-a-brac, I was startled by its extraordinary faithful- 
ness to the original. It left the impression of one's 
having again seen the poet himself, sitting as of old in 
his great chair amidst a wonderful litter of scattered 
books and papers. His manner was to turn at such 
times with precisely the look and expression conveyed 
by this portrait, when perchance a visitor had said 
something to arouse his interest. 

The last of the portraits that have been already 
published forms the frontispiece to November Boughs, 
intentionally designed in accordance with the spirit 
of the ' lingering sparse leaves ' on fading boughs, 
which the author there speaks of, but which, ' over- 
stayed of time,' he yet 
counts dearest of all — 
' the faithfullest — har- 
diest — last.' Although 
a wintry tree is engraved 
in the background, the 
portrait has evidently 
been taken indoors. It 
gives a full-length view, 
which forms a striking 
contrast to the figure 
presented in the early 
daguerreotype repro- 
duced in the first edition 
of Leaves of Grass, so 
full of youth and virile 
energy. 

Of other portraits en- 
graved already, but not 

yet published, a phototype, intended for Mr. W. Sloane 
Kennedy's forthcoming book upon Walt Whitman, 
gives a much more cheerful rendering of its subject, 
showing the poet once again in the familiar sombrero, 
grey coat, and open shirt-collar, and bringing out 
admirably the massive strength and friendly charm of 
the features. This was taken before his late severe 
illnesses had come upon the poet to leave new marks 
of suffering. Following this, we come now to the 
various photographs which are here reproduced for the 
first time, showing Whitman under various aspects 
during the past nine or ten years. These may best be 
allowed to speak for themselves, suggesting admirably 
as they do the noble presence of one whose outward 
bearing so thoroughly accords with the ideal laid down 
in his writings. 

More recent than most of these photographic like- 
nesses, at least two notable portraits in oils have been 
painted within the last three years. The first of these, 
by Mr. Herbert Gilchrist, was exhibited at the Gros- 
venor last year. It is a strong piece of work, conveying 




by the truth of rendering of face and figure something 
of the singular personal charm, something of that lurk- 
ing magnetic quality, which even in old age Walt 
Whitman possesses m so remai'kable a degree — some- 
thing, I say, for no portrait could possibly sufficiently 
convey the indescribable impressivenes? of the poet's 
actual presence. But to those who have not had the 
opportunity of paying a visit to the quiet cottage in 
that quiet street of the little town of Camden where 
the old poet lives, this picture of Mr. Gilchrist's is 
perhaps the nearest realisation to be obtained. It 
shows Whitman in full figure, life size, seated in his 
accustomed great chair, and clad in his characteristic 
grey, which colour, further amplified in the hair and 
flowing beard, is treated so as to contrast effectively 
with the rich flesh-tints of the face, and indeed domi- 
nates the whole picture so as to produce a striking 
effect of silvery light. If any fault were to be found 
with the painting as a portrait, it is that Mr. Gilchrist 

has been led to conven- 
tionalise and arrange, 
in Italian fashion, the 
dispersed silvery grey 
hair which is so notable 
a feature in his subject, 
as may be seen in other 
portraits, and which he 
has treated so as to some- 
whatchange the general 
effect of the face and 
head. 

A much more realistic 
portrait, and in so far a 
much more exact like- 
ness in detail than Mr. 
Gilchrist's, was Hearing 
completion during Ti\y 
visit to Camden, the 
work of a well-known Philadelphian painter, Mr. Eadie, 
who is known as a somewhat uncompromising realist 
in art circles there. At the opposite extreme to Mr. 
Eadie's portrait may be mentioned here two busts by 
Mr. Sidney Morse, a sculptor who is nothing if not an 
idealist. Mr. Morse's idealistic presentation in these 
busts is very powerful, however, and albeit lacking 
perhaps in certain technical qualities, they manage yet 
to convey the heroic effect of their original as no 
painting could do. They suggest, indeed, one of the 
old Homeric heroes in their broad modelling of the 
nobly poised head and massive features. A cast of one 
of these busts is now in London, in the possession of 
an old friend of the poet, Mr. Pearsall Smith. 

Taking all the photographic and other portraits here 
referred to, it is seen that a fairly full and satisfactory 
account of Walt Whitman's personal presence in his 
later years exists, so far as portraiture can give it. It 
would have been valuable, one thinks, if one of our 
older portrait-painters could also have had an oppor- 
tunity of painting the poet, but failing this we may 



24 ■ THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 

well be content with the series of portraits already in of a conventional kind. But in these later portraits 

existence, for what with the vai-ious artists — and not even those who find in the High Church curate type 

least among them the sun — who have done their best of masculine beauty tlieir ideal of manly grace may 

to give a true likeness, the readers of Leaves of Grass still, one thinks, find here an exceeding charm. To 

are not likely now or in the future to be at a loss to those who believe in the out-of-door natural life that 

know what the author was like, to use the conventional is celebrated in Leaves of Grass, it is enough to know 

phrase. In the series called Calamus the author that that life, truly and fully lived, has in the author's 

speaks of his ' swarthy face,' his ' grey eyes,' beard, own instance resulted in old age, after many struggles 

brown hands, 'and the silent manner of me, without and long illness, in so noble a physical presence as these 

charm ' — references which show, as indeed his whole portraits show to us. 
writings show, that his ideal of manly beauty was not Ernest Rhys. 



AN ORISON OF MIDSUMMER. 



IT is summer in the skies. 
Very noontide of the day ; 
If you fear it for your eyes. 

There are shadows deep as they ; 
Come and watch the butterflies. 
Come away ! 

Butterflies of white divine 
Fan the odours, faint as they. 

From blossoms of the jessamine ; 
Be their darling for to-day. 

Be their love, as thou art mine, 
Come away ! 

There shall be no marvel there. 

Only a girl with eyes astray 
In a bower of jasmine fair. 

And a boy beside her, gay, 
Weaving jasmine in her hair ; 
Come away ! 

We shall hear the river pour 

Through the stillness all the day 

Along the windings of the shore ; 
We shall think we hear it say 

Nevermore and Evermore ; 
Come away ! 

As upon a gateway steep 

Children swing themselves in play. 
We will swing upon the deep 

Soothing sense of holiday ; 
We will sing ourselves to .sleep ; 
Come away ! 

W. Renton. 



THE RETUllX OF THE WANDERING HEHl 25 



THE RETURN OF THE WANDERING HEHl. 

ri^lHE horseiuan came to the old park wall, 
J_ With its antique 'scutcheoned gate : 
None stin-ed in answer to his call — 
The lodge was desolate. 

He lighted down from off his steed — 

His arm i' the bridle-rein : 
The gates were choked with many a weed — 

He has thrust them back again. 

He enters on his own once more — 

It was late on a summer's day — 
His sires' domain from days of yore ! 

And he has been long away. 

On greensward and on forest-glade 

The length'ning shades were falling ; 
The birds a joyous music made, 

From bush :ind thicket calling. 

No woodman's axe, for many a year, 

No mower's scythe, I ween. 
Had lopp'd those broken boughs and sere. 

Or shorn that forest-green. 

The grass, with giant daisies pied, 

Grows tall and flowers around ; 
The tender partridge, undescried, 

Nests on the open ground. 

The Wanderer paced, with thoughtful mien, 

Thro' stately avenues ; 
The very path he trod was green 

With many a year's disuse. 

His horse went slowly by his side. 

Nor stayed to crop the wood ; 
Her neck was arched —and, gentle-eyed. 

She shared her master's mood. 

At length, afar, amidst the trees, 

The ancient Hall appears : 
rhe Wanderer's heart is full— he sees 

The home of other years. 

No human face looked forth : no smoke — 

The breath of life within — 
Rose up ; no voice the silence broke. 

No hospitable din : 

But, silent, sorrowful, forlorn — 

Its former inmates fled — 
He finds the house where he was born 

A mansion of the dead ! 

Geouge Douglas. 



VOL. 11. 



2() 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



HER LEDDYSHIP: A THRUMS GOSSIP. 



AT times, but not at other times, Silva Lowrie, 
who is still a young man, and looks well from 
the baci< on Sabbath-days, will give you to under- 
stand tiiat he does not want the affair between him 
and her ladv- 
sliip mention- 
ed. Silva is 
the Glen Cat- 
law post, and 
on his way to 
Thrums witli 
the letter-bag I 
have seen him, 
ashepassedthe 
moutli of my 
school - house 
patli, \\onder- 
ing what her 
ladyship really 
meant. When 
he gives it up 
his face be- 
comes as ex- 
pressionless as 
a watch with 
the hands off. 
G e n e r a 1 1 y, 
however, lie 
smirks com- 
placently, as 
in tlie tail end 
of last week, 
w hen the 
Castle brake 
passed liim in 

the Thrums . 

Square. Her 
ladyship was 
distinctly seen 
(in open day- 

ligllt)pointing j'" ■ .t...->^»J'v-..--.' ■ ■■■v-.^. -:„/--,;■> ....-„:.,i:jj 

him out to her 
husband. The 

earl, according to one w itness, laughed aloiul, but, in 
the version of anotjier, wlio may be a deacon any day, 
he glowered scornfully. Silva leisurely plodded on 
to the post-oftice, and smacked his thigh just as he 
was rounding the corner of the sepiare. Tln-ums 
has not made up its mind liow to regard the affair. 
As I «as one of those wlio had the story from Siha 
in the Bower, while he was still hot with it. I sliould 
be able to state liis case accm-atelv. 



.4> 



\. 



The Bower, five miles from Thrums, is a hole in 
tlie leafy bank of tlie Esk, with a rude seat in it 
tliat is damp and green, but not «ith paint. A 
rowan-tree, growing a little lower, spreads out its 

skirts to con- 
ceal the en- 
trance, which 
is known to 
most persons 
in these parts. 
A montli ago, 
dripping in a 
dogged rain, 
I forced my 
way up to the 
Bower, where 
I joined an- 
other angler, 
Tammas Hag- 
gart, and a 
woman-servant 
from the farm 
of Curley Bog, 
wliose name I 
do not know. 
Tannnas was 
showing meliis 
take, when the 
rowan-tree be- 
gan to nod. 

'There 's 
some crittur 
on tlie chain,' 
he said. 

.Just below 
the Bower a 
chain crosses 
the water, be- 
/ ing the only 

bridge in the 
:r:0>;;-M^:.:^i-:.^sr^:- .ij..t;i:«_va;.r,i::;Si^;_ n e i g ii b o ur- 

hood. To get 
over, you must 
breast this chain, and, as its one end is tied to a 
tree adjoining the rowan, any one in the Bower 
knows when a man is on the chain as well as 
though a bell rang. Soon Silva Lowrie pushed 
into our place of shelter, his shoulders as high as 
his ears, which was an intimation that lie felt wet. 

• Ay,' said Silva, slowly letting his shoulders 
down. 

' Silva,' replied Tannnas. 




HER LEDDYSHIP: A THRUMS GOSSIP 



27 



' She 's rainiii".' 

' She's weetin' ; she is so.' 

Tliere was room for Silva on the form, for Tam- 
mas was sitting gino-crly on a tisliing-basket, but tlie 
post preferred to lean against the tlanip wall of mud, 
now and again shaking himself like a. dog that has 
been in the water. He did not join in our conver- 
sation, but several times his mouth went to the side 
in silent laughter, to be suddenly brought back to 
its projoer slant as a doubt crossed his mind. Even 
before lie admitted it we knew that Silva was think- 
ing. After a time Tammas said in liis pointed wav — 

' Weel, Silva, lad, it 's you.' 

' Weel a wat,' was the post's sin-prising re])lv, ' it 
maun be me, thougli I hae haen my doubts. Yes, 
Tammas, I hae haen my doubts.' 

By this time we .saw that something out of the 
ordinary had happened to Silva, and he grew uneasy 
under our gaze. 

' I dinna ken,' he said, 'as it's a thing a botlv 
should speak o'.' 

Again he chuckled, and became grave. Tanmias 
and I waited, but the lassie exclaimed — 

' There 's a wuman in 't.' 

Silva turned on her in surprise. 

'Ay,' he admitted, 'there's a wuman, an" yet 
there 's no a wuman. She 's a wuman, in coorse, 
but wuman 's no the name for her.' 

' Ay, ay,' said Tammas, to help Silva on. 

' Ye canna put a coontess doon,' said Silva, leer- 
ing a little, ' as just a wuman.' 

I dare say we were all taken aback. 

' A coontess,' said Tammas, acting as spokesman ; 
' ye canna mean her leddyship ?' 

' As siu-e as gospel,' answered the post, ' it 's her 
leddyship I mean.' 

Her ladyship is young and beautiful, and new to 
Thrums. 

' Ye hae seen her t ' 

' Seen her ! ' cried Silva contemptuously. 

' Ye dinna say ye 've spoken till her .'' ' 

' Spoken till her ! Ay, Tammas, I 've spoken till 
her ; ay, an' a hantle mair than spoken till her.' 

Silva wagged his head three times, and then 
closed his mouth with a snap. Oiu- faces all 
asked questions. 

' Oot w i 't, Silva," said the lassie. 

' I dinna hae it arranged in order in my mind 
yet,' began Silva, ' for it came aboot nae langer syne 
than last nicht. An', mind ye, I dinna pertend 'at 
it 's no a kind o' bafflin' ! ' 

'Last nicht! was there no a dancin' ball at tiie 
Spittal last nicht .''' 

The Spittal (hospital ?) is a great house in Glen 
C'atlaw. 



' There was,' said Silva, ' an' what "s mair, ve may 
say I was there.' 

' Ca' canny, Silva.' 

' Ou, am no lifted up aboot it, but it 's a tae' 'at 
I fell in wi" her leddyship at the ball.' 

' Tod, lad, if her leddyship's carriage was as lang 
in makkin' its wy to the Spittal as you are in gettin' 
to her leddyship, she maun hae started sune to hae 
muckle time for dancin'.' 

' I warned ye it was a sort o' knotted in my 
mind.' 

' A\'eel, pass a'thing by till ye come to her 
leddyship.' 

' Na, I 've to come to the Spittal first. Tiiere 
was Kaytherine Crunnnie, too; her 'at'sa servant 
at the Spittal.' 

' A pridefu' crittur,' said tiie lassie. 

' I canna abide her,' said Tammas. 

' She 's Englishy, I admit, by what she used to 
be,' said Silva ; ' ay, she 's nve been jirood since she 
got her set o' false teeth.' 

' She's fair terrified we dinna ken they 're false,' 
the lassie interposed. 

' I dinna blame her,' said Tammas, ' for bein' big 
about hae'n false teeth ; that 's human nature. AVhat 
I canna stand is her callin' hersel" Kaytherine, when 
she used to be Kitty in Thrums.' 

' It 's the teeth,' exclaimed Silva, ' it 's the teetii. 
But, lat 's see, ye 're confusin' me ; whaur was I ? ' 

' Ye was makkin' yer wy to the Spittal.' 

' I was farther than that, surely ? I was at the 
Spittal. Ay, I gaed up to the hoose aboot half 
eleven to see gin there was ony letters, so Kay- 
therine ' 

' Ca' her Kitty.' 

' Weel, Kitty took me into the kitchen, an' I saw 
at a glint 'at there was michty eatin' an' drinkin' 
gaen on up the stair. Ay, she telt 's it was a ball. 
Kitty was frank far beyond ord'nar ; yes, I didna 
think o't at the time, but I see't distinctly noo in, 
in " 

' In the licht o' subsequent events,' suggested 
Tammas quietly, as if he was saying an easy thing. 

' x\n' what think ye made her sae condescendin', 
then ?' asked the lassie. 

' My opeenion,' said Silva deliberately, ' is 'at her 
leddyship had gien Kaytherine a hint." 

' But tlie Spittal doesna belang to her leddyship ; 
an' what would mak her sae interested in you ? ' 

' That 's what I dinna uner'stan',' admitted Silva, 
' but she micht hae seen me, ye ken, sometime, 
without me secin' her. That 's ane o' the things 'at's 
come to my mind in the liclit o' subsequent events.' 

' Weel, if ye would come to the subsequent 
events ' 




Hi 



(v r I 






t 1 



1 



CORRESPONDENCE 



29 



' Am on my wy. Kitty gae me some soup ' 

' Broth ? ' ' " 

' Na, faags a, it was sou]), an' it was sae tasty I had 
three plates o't. Slio wanted me to try a heap o' 
different dishes, windiu' my wy tln-ough them, as ye 
micht say, to the dessert, hut, sal, I stuck to the 
soup aince I was sure o't.' 

' What kind was it ? ' 

' Am comin' to that. Wiien I hud finished the 
third plateful Kitty tells me it's turtle soup, but I 
juist nodded my head politely, an' I think that a 
kind o' annoyed lier, for slie says, says she, " What 
tliink ve would be tlie price in a shop o' what ye've 
suppit ? " " Ou," I maks reply, " a guid curi-an baw- 
bees, I dinna doubt." " As am a breatliin' soul, 
Silva," says she, "ye've suppit ten sliillin's worth."' 

' Keep us a' ! ' cried the lassie. 

' It perfectly .shook me,' continued tiie post, ' ay, 
it made me sick. I could tak nae mair." 

' But her leddysjn'p ?' 

' Am at her noo. Wjien I liad come to niysef 
Kitty taks me up the stair to a little window, an' 
there I sat on a high stool lookin' in at the dancin' 
ball. It was a showy sicht, an' I dinna ken hoo 
lang I had been there, when a' at aince I sees Jier 
leddyship standin' by the side o' me.' 

' Ye 're sure it was herseF 't ' 

' Ay, Kitty had pointed her oot to me. Slie gae 
a bit lauch when she sees me, an' syne she says, says 
she, "And who do you think, niv man, is the 
))rettiest lady at the ball 'i " ' 

' Tod, that would tak ye aback.' 

' I dinna deny but it did so. liein' speired to mak 
up my mind sate hurried like." 



' What did ye say, Silva ?' 

' I liae haen some experience o" women, Tammas, 
an' I wasna sae far back as ye micht think. Says 
I, almost immediately, " Yer leddyship," says I, " I 
dinna see naebody 'at I would put afore yersel." ' 

'It was a judicious answer, Silva. She had been 
pleased i ' 

' ]\Ian, she was. She tappit me saft-like wi' jier 
fan, an' says slie, "And why do ye think I'm the 
prettiest 't " ' 

'Losh, losh ! tliat put ye in a waur predeecament 
than ever. Wliat said ye?' 

' Ou, I juist gae her a sort o' a smirk, an', says I, 
" Weel, yer leddyship," I says, " a' the others has sic 
sma' feet." ' 

' Nately turnetl, Silva." 

' Ay, but this is the queery thing. She gae me a 
slap, an' I fell richt aff tlie stool.' 

' Slappit ye '■! Yea, that looks as if she thocht ye 
liad been persoomin'.' 

'That's ae wy o" lookin" at it,' said Silva, ' but 
thae gran' fowk has queer wys. I ken frae Mag 
Bii'se, her as was leddysmaid at Glen Quharity, 'at 
when the captain man wanted to be partikler 
affectionate to his intended he nippit her airm. 
She used to lat Mag see lier airm black an', blue. 
Ay, thae gents has their ain wys.' 

' So ye think " 

' Na, I say naetliing, but it has struck me at 
times, Tanniias, 'at mebbee her leddyship was in a 
kind o' a frolicsome mood, an' was juist carryin' on 
wi' me, as ye micht say.' 

J. M. Barrie. 



CORRESPONDENCE. 



BERLIOZ AND PAGANINI. 



Edinburgh, ist May 1S89. 

The criticism of Jullien's book Berlioz, in your May 
number, by Franklin Peterson, almost compels me to 
say a few words about the famous incident in Berlioz's 
life, when Paganini, overcome witli admiration of the 
opera Benveinito Cellini, wrote that overwhehning letter 
to ' Beethoven's heir and successor,' enclosing 20,000 
francs as a memento of the transcendant occasion. 

So far this story has been known and transcribed 
into all books of that time, and accepted as a fact, 
although there were in Paris half a dozen of people 
who could have contradicted it ; but feeling that during 
the life of both Berlioz and Paganini it would have 
been bad taste to disturb the ' fragrance ' of that poeti- 
cal untruth, they did not speak, and, till Jullien's book 
appeared, nobody had mentioned it in print. 



It was a few years before the Franco-German war 
that I stayed with my friend Szarvady (husband of the 
famous pianiste, Wilhelmine Clauss) in his charming 
villa. Boulevard Malesherbes, Paris, when one Sunday 
Berlioz and Heller were guests at dinner. When 
alone with Heller in the garden I put many questions 
to him about Berlioz, with whom he was most intimate 
since their youth, and there he told me that Paganini 
was only induced by musical friends and others to hand 
o\er that monej' to proud Berlioz, otherwise he might 
not have accepted it from the real donor, but which 
he could well do from so rich an admirer and musician 
as Paganini was. Berlioz had never opportiniity of 
hearing the real facts. Heller seemed to know every- 
thing circumstantially about the affair, and mentioned 
the name of Halle in connection with it; so it was 



30 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



easy for me to question Halle on one occasion only a few 
years ago in Edinbin-gh, and I was astonished how well 
he recollected the case, with all incidents, with all 
names, which I tried to keep in memory, and in a few 
words will reiterate it here. 

At that time, about 1S5S, Liszt, Berlioz, Heine, 
Halle, Hellei", and many other distinguished people 
met in the same literary and musical circles, and often 
at the home of Monsieur Armand, editor of the Journal 
des Debais, a friend and admirer of Berlioz, who as a 
musical FcidlJcluvist was connected with the paper. 
Also Jules Janin, of whom many said that he gave the 



donation. Armand, knowing the tight circumstances 
Berlioz lived in, and yet not daring to send personally 
monetary help, hit upon the idea to do it through 
Paganini, who was not easily persuaded, and only ceded 
to the power of Armand's speech — to do it as a deed of 
necessity. A few years ago there were only four persons 
— all contemporaries — living who knew the story in 
Paris, and now there are only two left, viz. Sir Charles 
Halle and the old painter Mottez (or Motte), who 
could tell viva voce more than I am able from hearsaj'. 
I think there can be no harm done now to tell the 
truth. George Lichtenstein. 



NOTES AND REVIEWS. 



A MEMORIAL to Mr. G. F. Watts, R.A., suggesting to him 
that in bequeathing his pictures to the nation, as he has expressed 
his intention of doing, he should have some of them specially 
bequeathed to Scotland, is about to be signed by art students and 
artists in Edinburgh and Glasgow. The memorial recites the 
admiration with which Mr. Watts's pictures are regarded in 
Scotland, and urges the painter to aid in this way the promotion of 
national art. Sooner or later the centralisation of art treasures in 
London must be modified, and should Mr. Watts see his way to 
bequeath some of his pictures to .Scotland, an important step will 
be made in the encouragement of provincial art gatherings. 

The Glasgow Art Clue has resolved to have a Fancy Ball in 
aid of the Artists' Benevolent Fund. It has been proposed that a 
procession and tableaux be arranged, the design chosen being the 
representation of Delaroclie's Hemicycle, which was represented 
in this way at the Royal Institute in London a short time ago. 

Messrs. J. and W. Guthrie, Glasgow, have been successful 
in having their designs accepted for pulpit windows in Baillieston 
United Presbyterian Church and in Tignabruaich Free Church. 
The windows which this firm have just completed for West Parish 
Church, Helensburgh, and for Renfield Free Church, Glasgow, 
are about to be fixed in their respective places. 

David Gilmour, author of T/ie Pen Folk, Gordon's Loan, and 
other smaller sketches of Scottish character, has just died at Kil- 
malcolm, Renfrewshire. Mr. Gilmour was born in iSlI, and was 
thus at the date of his death in his seventy-eighth year. The Pen 
Folk is one of the best of Scotch books. In it and in Gordon's 
Loan there are some of the most delightful humorous sketches 
extant. Paisley has been celebrated for two manufactures — shawls 
and thread, and for one product — humour. The humour of 
Paisley is sui generis, and Mr. Gilmour had the knack of doing it 
into prose as no one else had. His descriptions of the Radical 
movement in Paisley, and of the earlier religious controversies 
there, are rich in notes of the social life of the time. 

The Irish Fine Art Society, after having given its thirty-first 
exhibition, decided to change the name of the association to that 
of the Water Colour Society of Ireland, with a corresponding 
limitation in the objects to be aimed at, and the first exhibition in 
Dublin under the new regime has been very successful. Open at 
the same time as the exhibition of the Royal Hibernian Academy, 
it has nevertheless been largely patronised, and the sales have been 
more numerous than at Abbey .Street Galleries. Much of the best 
work, especially in landscape, was contributed by lady artists. 
Miss Fanny Currey, Miss Rose Barton, Miss Keene, Miss Mac- 
auley. Miss O'Hara, and others taking a high position. Most of 
the studies were free from anything like piettiness, and altogether 
the collection gave satisfactory evidence of the progress of Water 
Colour Art in Ireland. Mr. Naftel, R.W.S., Mr. Bingham E. 
Guinness, R.II.A., and other less-known but able artists con- 
tributed greatly to the general excellence of the exhibition. 



The Ruskin Reading Guild Journal.— This little magazine 
is steadily improving, and the disciples of Ruskin are clearly 
accepting it as their recognised medium. Specially interesting 
articles in the May number are 'The Missal of Kaiser Max,' by 
W. G, CoUingwood, M.A., and 'The Pre-Raphaelite Movement,' 
by Kineton Parkes. ' The House of Commons and the Poor,' by 
H. Rose, is a rather thin article on a subject upon which Ruskin- 
ians should have much to say that were worth saying. In this 
paper there are some naive blunders. Herbert Spencer, Thomas 
Carlyle, John Ruskin, Henry George make rather an ill-assorted 
company, and none of them can quite fitly be described as an 
'economist.' It is not yet proved that Malthus's Law of Popula- 
tion is a ' misleading doctrine ' ; nor can it be held as demonstrated 
that ' the state of the land laws' is ' the first cause of evil,' — not 
generally, of course, but in relation to the ' condition of England ' 
question ; nor is it proved, /arf Mr. Henry George, that taxation 
of the unearned increment would disturb the balance, or want of 
balance, of power now existing between capital and labour. ' A 
frank and complete examination of the problem ' would probably 
reveal sundry joints in the armour of Mr. Henry George, and 
enable the student to avoid pitfalls like the inipol unique. Altera- 
tions in the incidence of taxation, changes in methods and in 
forms of government, even changes in industrial systems, potent as 
all these are, do not make for progress unless they are accompanied 
by the rationalisation of life on the individual as well as on the 
social plane. Mr. Ruskin is after all wiser than his followers. 

The 'Pall Mall Gazette' Extra, ' The Pictures of the 
Year ' is a wonderful sixpenceworth. The reproductions are as 
a rule well done, those from the pictures being generally the best. 
Some of the sketches by the artists have clearly erred on the side 
of slightness. 

The Bird Bride. A Volume of Ballads and Sonnets. By Graha.m 
R. ToMSON. London : Longmans, Green & Co., 1889. 

One begins to realise that a new generation of poets is arising, 
that in all grades the older are sinking into the background and 
the younger coming forward. Among these poets of the new 
epoch there is every variety of intellectual equipment and tendency. 
There is the capable versifier who is a High Tory in politics, and 
a very High Churchman in religion, who takes things as they 
are, and turns the world to his own uses as much as he may ; 
there is the iconoclastic Radical, who abjures all the other swears 
by ; there is the sorrowful pessimist, who beats his wings against 
the current and breaks them ; there is the gay pessimist, who 
wears sackcloth, not for himself, but for the general ; and there is 
the genial optimist, who is on excellent terms with powers seen 
and unseen : there is indeed eveiy variety of agnostic, and nearly 
every variety of positive habit of mind. On the whole, perhaps, 
the Whitmanic method of looking things squarely and intimately in 
the face has had agood deal to do in determining thestrain of recent 



NOTES AND REVIEWS 



31 



poetry. Whitman's chant method has had but few imitators, and 
it is well ; but the peculiar seriousness of his regard of common 
things has penetrated much of the worli of the younger poets ; not 
that this seriousness of regard is exclusively Whitmanic, but rather 
that Whitman emphasises it until it becomes a dominant note in 
his verse. 

George Meredith's JicaJiiig of Earth, W. E. Henley's Book of 
VerscSy William Sharp's Romantic Ballads, F. T. Marzials' bonnets, 
and now Graham R. Tomson's Bird Bride, coming as they have 
from the press hard after each other, afford ample proof that a 
newer, if not exactly a younger, generation of poets has come upon 
us. ' The Bird Bride,' which gives its name to Graham Tomson's 
little volume, is a short and extremely musical ballad with an 
Eskimo motive ; but it has by no means the weird strength of 
the poem called * Le Mauvais Larron,' suggested by Willette's 
picture ' L'Adieu Supreme,' reproduced in the Universal Review. 
The picture, though fascinatingly grotesque, disappoints one in its 
rather overstrained contrasts ; but the poem is perfect. The piece 
in parts reminds one of one of Tennyson's most powerful later 
poems ' Rizpah ' ; but it is fresh, original, and powerful in the highest 
degree. The figures in Willette's picture are — a man crucified on 
a wild moor, and, in front of the cross, standing on the back of a 
patient ass, a woman, who strains to kiss his dying or dead lips ; 
behind the cross crouches a boy. 

' The moorland waste lay hushed in the dusk of the second day, 
Till a shuddering wind, and shrill, moaned up through the twilight grey ; 
Like a wakening wraith it rose from the grave of the buried sun. 
And it whirled the sand by the tree — (there was never a tree but one) — 
But the tall bare pole stood fast, unswayed by the mad wind's stress. 
And a strong man hung thereon in his pain and his nakedness. 
His feet were nailed to the wood, and his arms strained over his head ; 
'Twas the dusk of the second day, and yet was the man not dead. 

The dark blood sprang from his wounds, the cold sweat stood on his face, 

Far over the darkening plain came a rider riding apace. 

Her rags flapped loose in the wind : the last of the sunset glare 

Flung dusky gold on her brow, and her bosom broad and bare. 

" I am here, O love, at thy feet ; I have ridden far and fast 

To gaze in thine eyes again, and to kiss thy lips at the last." 

She rose to her feet, and stood upright on the gaunt mare's back. 

And she pressed her full red lips to his that were stained and black. 

'* Good night, for the last time now — good night, beloved, and good-bye " — 

And his soul tied into the waste, between a kiss and a sigh.' 

In very many of the poems, weirdly fascinating suggestion is 
woven into the most graceful and musical verse ; for example, in 
'The Smile of all Wisdom,' and in the ' Deid Folk's Ferry.' 
Several of the poems deal with art or with artists, as this from a 
poem called ' Jean-Franfois Millet ' : — 

' O Master of the Old and New, 

We speak thy name with bated breath ; 
Thy waking years were all too few. 

In misty pastures dim with dew, 

Thy sad, strong spirit slunibereth ; 
Thy waking years were all too few. 

Now men their tardy laurels strew. 

And Fame, remorseful, sobbing, saith — 
O Master of the Old and New, 
Thy waking years were all too few ! ' 

It was as a writer of ballades that the author first became at all 
widely known. Several of these were published in Mr. Gleeson 
White's collection, and are now republished. It is breaking no 



secret to say that Graham R. Torason is the wife of Mr. Arthur 
Tomson, the landscape painter. 

A Witness from the Dead. By FLORENCE LAYAliD. 
The Ugly Story of Miss Wetherby. By Richard Pryce. 
London : Walter Scott. 
These two volumes of the Novocastrian Series are sensational 
enough to satisfy ordinary cravings in this direction. A Witness 
from the Dead is a supernatural story in which there are many 
blood-curdling episodes, and in which there is a ghost who goes 
to the opera, and an original and highly thrilling incident where a 
murder is re-enacted by a troupe of phantoms which have become 
visible by the employment of animal magnetism. The re-enacted 
murder is a decidedly clever conception, and the scene is extremely 
well written. There is, though, a limit to credulity even in ghost 
stories. We can accept the frequent appearances of ghosts singly 
or in groups, re-enacting scenes which under previous normal 
conditions they had enacted, but the unities are quite too violently 
outraged by the demand that we should believe that the victim of 
a murder came as a ghost to execute vengeance upon the murderer 
by tickling him on the soles of the feet till he died. Even in the 
supernatural one must draw the line somewhere. Tiie Ugly Story 
of Miss Wetherby is not creepy. Miss Wetherby is a man, who 
masquerades as a governess. Unfortunately the secret is not par- 
ticularly well kept. Not to be kept in suspense till the very end 
is a terrible disappointment to the amiable and indulgent reader 
of shilling shockers. 

Body and Soul. By Fred. Noel Paton. 
Edinburgh : W. Blackwood and .Sons. 
Body and Sold, by Fred. Noel Paton, is unquestionably above the 
average of slight literature of this order. Besides many indications 
of inexperience, there are many of latent power. Body and Soul 
is a story of scientific resurrectionism, if that may be so 'called 
which involves the extinction of the life of a man by anaesthetics, 
and the subsequent reintroduction of the vital spark into the same 
body. The story of course recalls Frankenstein, and to some ex- 
tent also Lytton's Strange Story, but in these romances in life 
elixirs the modus operandi is done off the stage. The finished 
product alone appears. Here the whole process is disclosed in a 
manner quite sufficiently minute to enable any one who chose to 
do so to perform the experiment. The details indeed are wonder- 
fully ingenious, though they are necessarily not a little ghastly. The 
moral of course is that the life of the body has been restored by the 
scientific means employed, but that the soul has gone. The man 
is of human form and brute nature. The working out of the 
moral in this way is interesting enough, though it is wholly in the 
usual vein. It is perhaps hardly worth while discussing so far- 
fetched a question, but assuming the practicability of resurrection 
under the described conditions, what reason is there to suppose 
that one set of characteristics would alone remain, or why suppose 
that any remain ?_ A study of an infant mind in a mature body 
would be worth having from a past master in psychology. Within 
the conditions laid down by himself Mr. Noel Paton 's romance is 
a clever piece of work. 

Quiet Folk. By R. Menzies Fergusson. London : Simpkin, 

Marshall, and Co. 
Quiet Folk is a quiet book with many good literary qualities. 
There ate sketches of north-country character very truthful and 
unpretentious, and there are notices of Principal TuUoch and i\Ir. 
Bazely of Oxford, all very pleasantly written. The slipping into 
verse, original and quoted, will be viewed variously. 



OUR PLATES.— The water-colour 'The Bath oi- 
Venus,' now reproduced for the first time, was exhibited 
at the spring exhibition of the Glasgow Instititte of th 
Fine Arts. The picture is the property of Mr. WilH 
Connal, jun., to whom we are indebted for the pr 



le 
iani 



lege of reproducing it. The subject of our second 
plate is an original drawing by M. Besnard, whose 
kindness in placing it at our disposal we desire to 
acknowledge. A note on the artist will be found in 
otir Palis Causerie. 



32 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



BA'VAIRD. 

"l^yOW who may be its present laird, 
_L 1 Or who possessed it long ago, 
The ancient castle of Ba'vaird, 

I neither know, nor care to know ; 

But lately (Fortune willed it so) 
Two youthful lovers, newly paired, 

As up Glen Farg they chanced to go. 
By chance to this old castle fared. 

How sweet the summer eve was aired 

With pink wild roses, all ablow. 
And larches, long and waving haired. 

In many a I'idged and terraced row ! 

The burn sang humbly far below, 
A lark the heaven of heavens dared, — 

It drew them, and they chanced to go 
To this old castle of Ba'vaird. 

They rose to where the hills are bared 

To breezes from the north that blow ; 
By this the soaring lark was laired, 

The golden sun was set, and lo ! 

As in a balance, rising slow, 
The pallid moon came up, and stared 

As if two lovers were a show 
Near this old castle of Ba'vaird 1 

Its frown the fortress might have spared. 
The moon her wonder ; they would go, 

This brace of lovers, lately paired, 
And find or force a welcome ! So — 
' Down drawbridge, grooms ! «hat, warder, ho ! 

Raise the portcullis ! By my beard 
The slumbering sentinels shall knou' 

He comes, the master of Ba'vaird ! ' 

The lady, nestling closer, shared 

The cloak that round the twain did go. 
And thus the castle's mouth they dared, 

And scaled the battlements ; and lo ! 

Out flashed the moon with magic glow, 
And, on the instant, they were laird 

And lady, living long ago 
In their strong castle of Ba'vaird. 

,J. LoGiE Robertson. 

Note. —The old castle of Balvaird is just above Glen Farg, on the borders of 
Perthshire and Fifeshire. It is in excellent preservation, and commands an 
extensive and romantic view of sea and land. It seems to be without a history. 




Edinburgh : T. and A. Constable, Printers to Her Majesty. 



f^^^^^'^^'^- iksf^ ^mmr^m m' 




V 



The Scottish Art Review 



Edited bv JAMES MAVOH. 



Vol. II. 



JULY 1889. 



No. 14. 




HEARTS-EASE. 

'There is Pansies ; that's for Thoughts.' — Hamlet, Act iv. Sc. 5. 

I PLUCK my idle thoughts like flowers 
That lighten through the haze of {Iream, 
And cast them to the rippled hours 
To float with singing down the stream. 

Drift, stream, away to shoreless seas ! 

Drift, song and flowers, adown tlie tide ! 
New flowers flush fair in place of the.se. 

And song and sun with me abide. 

I crave no restful shades of night ; 

The quiet of an even day. 
With silken wings of tremulous light. 

Nestles about my heart alway. 

Martin Queiin. 




VOL. 11. 



34 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



OF STYLE, AND OF THE COMPLAINT OF 

ART WORK. 



SAMENESS' IN 



THE poet is an artist not less than the painter. 
' His sphere is sound : his tools are words.' Let 
us pursue the analogy of Lessing. 

Art is presentative. The artist (be he poet, painter, 
musician, actor, or dancer) finds his initial stimulus in 
the desire of self-expression — the desire to present 
that which is most distinctive of himself in the 
form in which it may best be preserved, or in which 
the memory of it may longest endure. In the estima- 
tion of his achievement, we consider first what it is he 
has chosen to present, and next, what outfit he has had 
for his task. What material, what tools. Condemned 
or approved, it is upon his own showing. Style consists 
in Masterly Presentation. 

To speak first of the painter. We see almost at a 
glance that the sure attainment of a narrow control 
marks the climax of his performance. ' Raphael was 
ignorant of the elements of painting,' some admirer 
of Rembrandt is able to say, with at least so much of 
meaning that his remark remains intelligible. Secrets 
of the universe hidden from Raphael were revealed to 
Rembrandt, and the Dutch painter mastered a new 
language of expression of which the Roman knew 
not the alphabet. Shadowed by the genius of a 
Raphael, we feel that from him there was nothing hid. 
Turn to the work of a Rembrandt, or a Turner, and 
almost it would seem that our Raphael went blind- 
eyed about the world. 

The presentments of the painter being visual, this 
limitation of his range is quickly perceived and pun- 
gently felt. ' Such a one's works are all so much alike ' 
is a complaint very commonly heard. Yet often this 
means nothing more than that ' such a one ' has bidden 
farewell to his immature days, and, in short, perfected 
a style. 

The question confronts us again — In what does 
this style consist ? In the impress of a constant 
individuality upon the ever-shifting material of 
thought. The artist is straitly confined. Only a few 
of the world's wonders are seen by his eyes. Only 
in a corner of the universe of knowledge does he 
darkly grope. His best hope, then, as ours, is to learn 
the secret of disnified movement within the narrow 



circumference of that circle which sets a term to all 
effort. To have learnt this secret is to have mastered 
a style. 

The idiosyncrasy of temperament which imparts to a 
man's writing this distinction of style is often a blot, 
intellectually regarded, upon the sanity of his genius. 
The magnificent waywardness of Mr. Ruskin, for ex- 
ample, whilst it is the very soul and essence of his 
writing, what is it but a hindrance and a stumbling- 
block to those who take up his book in search of 
knowledge, or philosophic leading ? 

It is with the writer as it is with the painter. Even 
the greatest sees little : of that little he knows but 
one use. 

A man's style proclaims the limits within which his 
perfection lies. We read between the lines of his 
book, and it seems to speak thus : — 

' I see these things, and these only. I can deal with 
them thus, and thus only. I beat my wings against 
the confines of my cage, but in vain. These bold anti- 
theses, sudden turns, these quaint involutions, which to 
3'ou are but so many masterful felicities of a great style, 
are indeed nothing more than the shifty inventions of 
a necessitous brain ever struggling to cast his poor net- 
work of words over vasty impalpable phantasmas of 
thought.' ' I abandon,' he seems to say, 'the hard 
contention. Henceforth I am satisfied if I may testify 
to some few things I have seen in some few words of 
which I am master.' 

Only with that abdication of empire does the perfec- 
tion of art become possible. The work in which first 
a man gives assurance of a style will be that in which 
finally he accepts his limitations. From that moment 
his works, in a sense, will be ' always the same,' but the 
Sameness is of their essence. Posterity will treasure 
every fragment of the artist (poet or painter) which 
bears his sign-manual legibly upon it. He will be 
valued, in short, for the number of things which he 
did alike, and not for the number of attempts which 
he made, resulting in performances tentative and 
immature, and not deeper in meaning, nor wider in 
range, because uncertain and variable in mode of 



expression. 



Ernest Radford. 



HENRY MLTHRMAN. 



SOME painters there are whose woi-k is not so 
visibly incorporated and intimately inwoven with 
their own personality, as it were, the outcome and 
very essence of their inner life, but that each — the 
craftsman and his productions — may be spoken of 
separately, or at least as being distinct one from 
the other. ' Visibly,' be it said advisedly, for all art 



that is in any degree sincere can but be the result of 
individual conviction and experience ; material from 
without passed through the alembic of the mind, to 
be therein transmitted into gold or lead, or silver per- 
chance, as the inherent qualities of the ingredients 
added by the alchemist may determine. 

But even the most casual of observers could hardly 



HENRY MUHRMAN 



35 



fail to identify the art of Henry Mulirman with tlie 
artist himself. Le style c'est I'homme, and in this 
instance we may say so indeed ; for no man can have 
moi'e resolutely cut himself loose from tradition and 
convention of every kind, and striven after true self- 
knowledge as the means of developing a sincere 
method of his own, than this young American painter. 
This being so, and the striking identity of the painter 
with his work being fully recognised, it may prove not 
unprofitable to give some slight sketch of his ante- 
cedents, and of his career up to the present. 

Born in Cincinnati in 18.)4, Henry Muhrman, as his 
obviously Teutonic name betrays, is of German parent- 
age, both his father and mother having been natives 
of Nordhorn, a little town markedly Dutch in charac- 
ter, which characteristic is also clearly perceptible in 
his work, forming another interesting example of the 
far-reaching influence of heredity. In very early years 
the instinct towards drawing and painting made itself 
evident, and at the age of fourteen, having neither 
the means nor the opportunity to follow the pro- 
fession of a painter, he chose lithography as being 
an occupation perhaps the most closely in sympathy 
therewith. 

After seven years, the whole of which period was 
devoted to engraving and lithography, the desire to 
develop his potentialities as a painter became too 
strong to be longer resisted, and in 1S76 Mr. Muhrman 
entered the Academy at Munich. Passing the Antique 
and Life Class in one year, he was at once promoted 
to the Wagner Painting School, which, however, he 
did not enter, that master's conception of the aims 
of art being too distinctly out of harmony with his 




L.i 




own. With the same earnest sincerity of purpose, 
therefore, which has characterised the whole course 
of his actions, he, accompanied by a few American 
compatriots, forsook Munich for a little village, 
where he principally occupied himself in drawing 
and painting in water-colour. Here, too, he en- 
joyed that close communion with Nature so abso- 
lutely essential to a seeker after truth. Mr. Muhrman 
had thus spent about two years abroad when he found 
himself compelled, by the practical exigencies of 
life, to return to New York, where for a time he 
attracted much attention as a water-colourist, also 
contributing illustrations to several of the principal 
magazines. However, before long, the impression 
created by the novelty of his work wore off, and he 
resorted to teaching. Failing in health, and receiving 
but inadequate appreciation from his fellow-country- 
men, he sought the Old World again by the advice of 
his physician, revisiting Munich, and sojourning for a 
while in Italy. 

But it was not until 1883 that he carried out his 
long-considered design of settling in England, an un- 
dertaking not without difficulties, especially to a man 
possessed of such an uncompromising individuality. 



HENRY MUHRMAN 



37 



so incorruptible an intellectual conscience, as Heniy 
Muhrman. 

An enthusiast feeling his way, as it were, towards 
the most suitable means of incorporating his emotions, 
endeavouring to give expression to the truth which is 
in him (the most exacting of all masters), must needs 



his art by painting pretty insincerities, Henry Muhr- 
man has had ' a hard row to hoe,' and has passed 
through his inevitable course of struggles and priva- 
tions with as much dignity as philosophy. 

Like all workers who strive earnestly and unswerv- 
ingly after the best results, he seeks to keep himself 




at first stand somewhat at a disadvantage among a 
public hardly yet accustomed to verisimilitude in art. 
As may be imagined, then, Mr. Muhrman's path has not 
been a smooth one. If descent be easy, how propor- 
tionately steep must be the road which leads ' uphill 
all the way — yea, to the very end.' 

Almost unknown in this country, entirely dependent 
upon his own exertions, refusing utterly to prostitute 



always in touch with Nature, drawing direct inspiration 
from her alone ; and that this is his aim is a fact to 
which his pictures, down to the merest sketches, bear 
convincing testimony. I have heard him say, ' When 
painting from Nature, sympathise with the mood she is 
in ' ; and this he has a singular power of doing, paint- 
ing not only fiom his outer vision, but with his mind, 
interpreting with nobility and grandeur, united to 



38 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



poetic refinement in a high degree, those phases which 
impress him. 

It is his opinion 
that in painting, as in 
music, the emotions 
should find full ex- 
pression, but not, how- 
ever, at the sacrifice 
of good technique ; 
and indeed one, yet 
only one, of the great- 
est charms of his work 
consists in his abso- 
lutely suitable and 
skilful handling. His 
scheme of colour is 
always refined and 
beautiful, although, 
perhaps, at times 
somewhat limited. 
' Remember,' he says, 
' that the spirit is 
everything, and that 
even colour is only an 
auxiliary.' 

Many qualities of 
his work are well 
represented by the 
sketches accompany- 
ing this article, and 
also to a fuller extent 
by his pictures hang- 
ing in the present 
exhibitions of the 
Grosvenor Gallery 
and the New English 
Art Club. *>-'«&*w*«!ii»,«8Sif«J«?f««*'Kfte^^ 




only be regarded as the achievement of a painter pos- 
sessing no ordinary share of genius ; the work of a man 

who not only sees and 
selects well, but who 
has gained the mas- 
tery, in an astonishing 
degree, over the me- 
dium employed to ren- 
der his conceptions. 

Exceedingly fine, 
also, is his picture now 
at the New English 
Art Club (Dudley 
Gallery) of ' Ehren- 
breitstein,' a singu- 
larly impressive piece 
of work, full of a cer- 
tain sombre vastness 
and sense of space, 
instinct with a quiet 
dignity peculiarly 
characteristic of the 
artist. 

The immense 

frowning mass of rock 
(between which and 
the beholder the at- 
mospheric illusion is 
excellently given) 
stands huge, crowned 
with low, sunlit white 
houses, against a nar- 
row strip of faintly- 
blue sky ; below, in 
the foreground, lies 
shadow, and water in 
shadow. 



ryv-;i,^^-<>5'".,^'oi^.*.'*>''''^^ ' 



»:S^''V 



Perhaps the most remarkable of his works at the 
former exhibition is that entitled ' The Hayfield,' 
showing an effect of 

chastened sunlight ' ' ~ "" 

upon a pastoral 
landscape. In the 
foreground are 
figures,and a loaded 
wain. The hand- 
ling here is simply 
admirable, and the 
treatment large and 
grand. Ground and 
sky alike are well- 
nigh colourless, but 
intensely luminous, 
and their relative 
values true. The 
figures are digni- 
fied, and finely sug- | 
gested, both as to 
form and action 




The same feeling of well-nigh magnificent immen- 
sity and atmospheric charm is shown forth in Mr. 

Muhrman's small 
~ ~~ I pastel drawing (one 

r of many, for he is 
' a great lover of 
that most accom- 
modating and sym- 
pathetic ot me- 
diums)of the 'Gates 
of Coblentz.' The 
effect is, of course, 
indescribable; a 
larajj burns dimly 
in the semi-obscur- 
ity of the looming 
portal, which 
towers, massive and 
solid for all its sha- 
dowiness, high 
above, with such 



Indeed the picture as a whole can an effect of Cyclopean grandeur that it is hard to keep 



HENRY MUHRMAN 



39 



before one the actual dimensions of the drawing, which 
are comparatively insignificant. I have seldom seen 
such a large small picture. There is much poetry, too, 
in a little pastel of simply and literally a grate, warm 
and glowing with a coal fire. Out of this prosaic 
enough subject Mr. Muhrman has evolved a really 
romantic study, independent of accessories or genre- 
properties of any sort or kind ; but then cheap senti- 
ment has no place dans xcs idce.i. 

As yet unfinished, standing in the studio with its 
face to the wall, awaiting the right moment for com- 
pletion, stands a large canvas, which, if it fulfil its 
present promise, cannot fail to be one of Mr. Muhr- 




speak for itself, 
gaining for its crea- 
tor a position in 
England that will 
leave him no reason 
to regret his for- 
saken fatherland. 

I will close with 
an essentially char- 
acteristic anecdote, 
orrather an episode, 
epitomising, as it 
were, the painter's 
life and aims. 

It is Mr. Muhr- 
man's custom to 
-spend much of his 
time wandering 
about in the more 
wild and beautiful 
parts of Hampstead 
Heath. One Sun- 
day morning, sit- 
ting on one of the 
scattered benches 
there, he fell into 
^conversation with 
an elderly stranger, 
,who joined with 
him in admiration 
of the unspoiled charms of the place. 
Muhrman, ' I prefer it on week-days, 
many people about just now.' 

' Then you should go to church on Sundays,' 
marked the stranger, with some austerity. 

' I go to church every day.' 

' Really ! and where, ma}' I ask ? ' 

' Here,' the painter replied. 

Graham R. Tomson 







But,' said Mr. 
There are too 



man's best pictures. The subject is a cornfield at 
harvest-time, flooded with warm evening light. Two 
powerfully-conceived figures of peasant women, sugges- 
tive, although certainly not imitative, of those of Millet, 
are stooping over their work. The note of brilliant 
positive colour in the head-dress of the foremost of 
these figures, taken in conjunction with the sombre 
dresses and, beyond, the glowing light upon the corn, 
produces an almost oriental impression of gorgeousness. 
But enough of a picture which has, in all likelihood, 
yet to pass through many stages of de\elopment in 
the hands of the artist, and which, doubtless, will soon 




40 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



IBSEN ON THE STAGE. 



FRIDAY the 7th of June is a date people are 
likely to remember. For some time past every- 
body one met had been talking about Ibsen ; every 
tenth man had written an essay about him ; one heard 
of people who were learning Norwegian for the pur- 
pose of translating some of his works, and it was even 
whispered that gentlemen hitherto quite innocent of 
vei'se were meditating poetical versions of Brandt or 
Peer Gi/nt. One felt, here is a new thing, a new 
writer, a man who understands to-day and foresees 
to-morrow ; in these plays we get a picture of life 
which is profoundly true, and which shows the links 
and the cause of things, and is also something more 
than a picture — a mirror revealing to us our own ugli- 
ness. Ibsen was that curious thing — an artist with a 
mission ; and so fine was his art, that those who hated 
missions loved him for his art ; and so earnest was his 
purpose, that those who despised the ' frivolity ' of art 
loved him for his devotion to social problems. To the 
Socialists Ibsen was a champion ; to those who care for 
literature, and who care that literature should have 
' modernity," he was a new force, telling profoundly 
against the conventionalities. But one had to re- 
member that, first and before all, Ibsen was a writer 
for the stage, and that what one was reading with 
such vivid interest, and finding as one read it to be 
good literature, admirable dramatic literature, would 
have to be considered from the point of view of the 
stage before it would be possible to say the final word 
about it. It is not yet possible to say the final word 
about Ibsen as a writer for the stage, but after that 
performance at the Novelty of Mr. Archer's translation 
of A Doll's House one may venture to say a word 
which, certainly, was not possible before. 

The daily papei-s have given the story of the play, 
and I need not repeat that here. I am concerned at 
present simply with my impressions — mine, as one of 
the audience — of what I saw on the stage ; with the 
question, Does Ibsen act as well as he reads .'' During 
the whole of the first act I found no answer to my 
question, or if any answer began to form itself the 
answer was negative. Here were people on the stage, 
talking, moving about, behaving certainly in a manner 
very like life, and one saw their characters clearly 
enough. Well, but what of all that ? Here was life, no 
doubt, but was it interesting ? I could not feel that the 
interest was very absorbing. It was like some of those 
parts of Tolstoi which are so much like life that they 
bring the daily dust along with them, and give one the 
same feeling of ennui as the duller hours of our own 
existence. But already, before the curtain went 
down, the interest was beginning to grow, and when 
the second act came one saw that what had gone I)e- 
fore was like one of those opening chapters in Balzac, 
so heavy as one reads them, but coming afterwards to 
have their necessary part in the whole as one looks 
back from a further point in the action. The second 



and third acts were simply absorbing, though with a 
certain difference. The second act — really the great 
one — appealed to everybody ; it was impossible to 
imagine the person who could watch it without an 
intense and concentrated interest. It was psychology, 
and there was rapid outward movement as well. The 
great scene was as moving as anything I ever saw on 
the stage — the scene where Nora dances the tarentella, 
and you see through the half-open door behind her the 
fatal letter lying in the letter-box. There was the true 
tragedy of modern life, coming up naturally out of the 
little accidents, the casual details, of daily life, and with 
all that as a homely background to it, intensifying its 
effect by the contrast. The third act was all psycho- 
logy, but it was also unquestionably absorbing. The 
action moves, and one felt it moving, though these 
))eople simply sit in a room and talk. One listened 
with breathless interest: here indeed is a soul's tragedy, 
and the tragedy of how many souls ! And then after, 
one could not help wondering. Had Helmer been in 
the stalls, would he have thought it interesting .'' 

And there, perhaps, is the real point of the experi- 
ment, and just the point it is so difficult to decide. 
Will art such as Ibsen's atti'act the crowd, that deplor- 
able ' general public,' on which, certainly, the success 
of a play, more even than the success of a book, 
depends ? That it can will only be known when a 
play of Ibsen's has a season's run, and does not (as the 
great things usually do) spell ruin. The applause on 
Friday night was the applause of a picked audience — 
and applause not purely meant for the art of the thing, 
for the Socialists were there, one big ' family party.' 
What would be the voice of an average London pit.'' 

In the play itself it is Nora who attracts to herself 
all the interest, and in the performance at the Novelty 
the character of Nora was interpreted with singular 
truth and charm by Miss Janet Achurch — herself, one 
imagines, a Nora, with the youth, the brightness, and 
the depth of Ibsen's delightful woman. Mr. Charring- 
ton was certainly good as Dr. Rank, so was Mr. Waring 
as Helmer ; but both were good in a somewhat 
negative way, while the other characters were bad in 
a way somewhat too positive. But the acting of Miss 
Achurch (after she had shaken off the nervousness 
which accentuated her gaiety too strongly in the 
earlier part of the play) was altogether admirable, 
sometimes superb. Her whole reading of the character 
was an intellectual achievement; her rendering, despite 
a few flaws — a few failures where success should have 
been electric, — showed that she could not only under- 
stand this delicate and complex nature, but that she 
could translate her vision into action. Miss Achurch 
has a future before her, a future already beginning, 
and it promises well for the direction of that future 
that the first step in it should have been taken so 
worthily in so worthy a cause, the cause of serious 
drama. Arthur Svmons. 



PROFESSOR HERKOMER'S PICTORIAL MUSIC-PLAY 



41 



PROFESSOR HERKOMER'S PICTORIAL MUSIC-PLAY. 



THE theatre at Dyreham, which was a disused 
chapel, standing near the professor's house, 
almost among the rose-trees of his garden, has, since 
starting last year on its new career, gathered about 
itself associations of high 
endeavour and no less 
high realisation. 

The decorations of the 
building might stand as 
evidence of the spirit 
which rules the life of 
the master and his pupils. 
Work, beautiful, consci- 
entious, varied, pursued 
with the enthusiasm of 
a religion, is the guiding 
principle at Dyreham. 
The charming frieze 
which decorates the 
pitch-pine walls of the 
theatre ; the stencilled 
pattern that adorns the 
panels of its ceiling ; the 
finely-carved design of 
oak-leaves which runs 
along the front of its 
gallery; the elegantly- 
wrought iron-work hold- 
ers, from which are sus- 
pended the lamps for 
the electric light ; the 
bronzed scrolls on the 
screen, hiding the or- 
chestra from view, on 
which famous names are 
inscribed, are all the 
handiwork of the master 

and his assistants. The proscenium is arched, and 
beyond the pit, which holds the invisible musicians, 
hang gold silk curtains worked with a simple design of 
delicate embroidery. 

The miniature theatre at Dyreham is, as will be 
seen, constructed, as far as may be, on the principles 
adopted at Bayreuth. The absence of footlights, the 
concealment and subduing of all that distracts the 
mind from what is passing on the stage, savour of 
Wagnerian management. 

Professor Herkomer's originality in stage manage- 
ment is especially displayed in an incomparable 
mastery over the resources of illumination, an admir- 
able union of objects modelled in the round with 
painting which produce scenic effects of marvellous 
beauty. The witchery of moonlight has never been 
rendered before as it is here, by means of a globe 
lit with electric light, shrouded with gauze and movino- 
VOL. II. 




on pulleys. The stationary moon of other theatres 
looks a vulgar sham near the slowly travelling orb, 
surrounded by a nimbus of hazy light which we see 
shining down from the sky of the Dyreham play- 
house. The sky there 
is no flat surface, but a 
blue vault, painted in 
skilfully-graduated mo- 
dulations of blue. Over 
this azure dome float 
misty gauzes superposed 
in delicate varieties of 
line, illumined by an 
ever - shifting play of 
light. 

The zeal of a number 
of gifted individuals was 
brought to bear on the 
production of Professor 
Herkomer's new Pic- 
torial Music- Play. 
Through the winter 
months, and deep into 
the spring and early 
summer, the master was 
at work during his lei- 
sure hours perfecting 
the work in all its de- 
tails. In their periods 
of relaxation from paint- 
ing the students helped ; 
rehearsals of the Idyl 
were going on at Bushey 
through the spring and 
early summer. 

Mrs. Herkomer con- 
tributed her share in de- 
signing and making the quaint Chaucerian costumes of 
wool dyed on the premises. Herr Richter, who lately 
took up his residence at Bushey, conducted the invisible 
orchestra, led by Herr Joseph Ludwig. Mr. Joseph 
Bennett wrote the words of the graceful lyrics. To 
the genius of the place. Professor Herkomer himself, 
are due the story, the music, and its orchestration ; 
the scenic effects, the stage management, and the 
acting of the principal part — that of John, the village 
blacksmith. 

The Idyl is more elaborate and complete as a 
work of art than was the Sorceress, the musical 
fragment by the same hand, brought out on the 
same stage last year. The difficult art of pantomine, 
rhythmic gesture to the accompaniment of music, is 
used as the principal means of telling the story of the 
Idyl. Dumb show combined with music was, as we 
know, the earliest form taken by dramatic art, and was 

F 



42 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



used on the Greek and Roman stages. To tell a story 
thus plainly and effectively, and yet without exaggera- 
tion, requires a training founded, perhaps, more than 
any other, on the conception of education as a mingled 
system of music and gymnastics. If the mimic panto- 
mime on the stage of the Dyreham theatre was occa- 
sionally overdone or inadequate, the music that 
accompanied it was always emotionally expressive. 
Wagnerian in the spiritual significance of its theme, 
it was yet thoroughly original in the English senti- 
ment that pervaded the melodies. 

The story of the Idyl is very simijle : it is the old 
story of the village maid, betrothed to an honest 
lover, lightly wooed by the lord of the Hall ; of 
religion and thoughts of the dear home helping her in 
her hour of trial. One of the leading motifs of the 
music is a ballad melody, telling the sorrowful story 
of the betrayal of the maid of Avondale. Snatches of 
this motif seem to pervade the play, occurring at 
various crises with poignant effect. 

The action of the Idi/l passes in an English hamlet 
in the fourteenth century. The first and third acts 
show an English street, the rough pavement of which 
runs down the centre of the stage. On either side 
rise the quaint gabled houses, with latticed windows, 
and benches placed against the walls. To the right is 
the village smithy, furnished with a real anvil and 
forge. It is autumn, and the half-reaped fields stretch 
beyond on the hillside rising at the back of the hamlet. 
During the first act the golden sunshine of late 
afternoon bathes the street ; the light slowly deepens 
into the glow of sunset ; passes into the soft mellow- 
ness of after-glow, and the poetry of moonlight. 
With admirable illusory effect the roughly paved 
street and crumbling wall stretch away into the back 
scene, where the same combined process of model- 
ling and painting is sustained. 

The landscape is alive with intricacies of light and 
shadow. The modelled houses, trees, the corn-stacks 
on the half-reaped fields are illumined, and cast 
shadows according to the direction of the setting sun 
or the rising moon. 

The elder folk sit on the benches placed against 
the walls of the houses. Women spin, distaff in hand ; 
cradles lie at their feet ; the children play and dance. 
The smith (Professor Herkomer) and his lads, Dick o' 
the Dale (Mr. Daniel Wehrschmidt), Hal (Mr. Lock- 
hart Bogle), Jack the apprentice (Mr. D. J. Williams), 
make the anvil ring with the stroke of the hammer. 
This rhythmic stroke becomes a melody dominating the 
cadences of the orchestra, as might a voice of cheer- 
ful labour. The colouring of flowing mantles, quaint 
head-gears, kirtles, and kerchiefs is rich and strong. 
The key of colour runs mostly in blues and yellows, 
with rich dashes of scarlet, and touches of neutral 
browns. The pointed hoods ended with tassels, the 
tan-coloured leggings, and tunics and leather aprons 
have a quaint charm contrasting with the characterless 
costume of the labouring classes of to-day. 



In a soft minor key the older folk sing in chorus 
praise of the departing day, of the approaching hour 
of rest, for 

' Sweet is niglit, and sweet is sleep, 
Good Lord, send us slumber deep.' 

The fresh voices of children dancing in a ring round 
the village cross respond, and the bui'den of their 
pretty song is regret at the coming darkness, for 

' Sweet is light ! that 's what we say ; 
Always light and always play.' 

Through this network of delicate melody the music 
pulses in languid chords. Presently the voice of the 
smith, as he beats out tlie iron-work, trolls forth, cele- 
brating the joy of work and of duty done. His lads 
join in the stirring chorus : — 

' Bellows roar, and anvil ring ; 
Ho, the jolly smith's a king !' 

Meanwhile the picture moves and changes. Now an 
old granny crosses the stage leaning on a little child. 
Now the children group themselves at the foot of the 
cross, their pointed caps and tunics outlined duskily 
against the glowing sk}' ; then again a toddling child, 
in a close cap and quaint long short-waisted frock, 
clambers on the knee of the blacksmith, as he rests a 
moment. The impressive figure of the elderly man, 
with flowing beard, and tawny pointed cap, tunic, and 
leggings, and the quaint little figure on his knee, is a 
picture in itself 

The quietude of the scene is shortly after disturbed, 
as the orchestra plays a motif which is destined often 
to occur. The countr3'-folk and children press for- 
ward, and at the back of the stage Lord Fitz-Hugh 
(Howden Tingey), in all the bravery of knightly 
costmne, passes, followed by his retainers. The 
close-fitting scarlet tunic, the heavy gold necklet, the 
particoloured hose, scarlet and blue, the long-pointed 
yellow shoes of the knight, contrast with the dress of 
the homely figures around. The brilliant group has 
scarcely flashed past, when the bells of the neighbour- 
ing church ring out the Angelus. Of the many beauti- 
ful and impressive pictures to be found in the Idi/l, 
that of the kneeling folk is perhaps the most impres- 
sive. The children cluster around their mothers, who 
teach them to fold their little hands in prayer ; the 
old men, the smith and his lads, bare their heads, 
and join in w-orship, woi'dless, yet expressed by the 
solemn sweetness of the orchestral score. The sun has 
sunk behind the hill ; still after prayer the children 
loiter, eager for play. The}' gather round the knee of 
the old granny, who, to the accompaniment of a sug- 
gestive measure, tells with mimic gestures some tale 
at which the children laugh. There now floats faintly 
above the cadence a snatch of ballad melody. The 
rim of the moon shows above the brow of the hill, and 
out of the fields the reapers come carrying sheaves on 
their heads. The)' are led by the smith's daughter, 
Edith (Miss Dorothy Dene), a picturesque figure in 
blue, wearing a chaplet of corn-flowers. As the 



PROFESSOR HERKOMER"S PICTORIAL MUSIC-PLAY 



4,3 



reapers troop in, they sing a chorus of thanksgiving, 
with the refrain ' To praise the Lord for all.' Edith's 
demeanour is out of keeping with the surrounding 
rural peace. Through the brightness of the music 
throbs a restless note. The girl's betrothed, Dick o' 
the Dale, approaches to greet her, but she repulses 
him and continues to wander restlessly from group to 
gi'oup. A call is made for a dance, but Dick is too 
much saddened by P^dith's coldness to play. The 
rebec a comrade has placed in his hand lies idle in 
his listless grasp, and at last Edith petulantly pulls 
the instrument away. As she looks at Dick with 
frowning brow, the motif that heralded Fitz-Hugh's 
appearance sounds once more, and the young lord 
steals in, and approaching Edith takes the rebec from 
her hand. A murmur of astonishment goes through 
the crowd as the young lord seats himself on the 
anvil and strums a tune full of movement and charac- 
ter. In a moment the reapers and the lads are 
mingling in the mazes of a country dance. The active 
grace of the dancers, moving to the tripping measure, 
the effect of the country, bathed in the light of the 
moon, slowly climbing ujj the sky, form an ensenihic 
of sylvan charm. 

Edith has not joined her comrades, she stands 
like one lost in a dream, hearkening to the music ; 
while two brooding spectators — on the other side 
— her father and lover, watch her sadly for a while, 
then turn away. She seems scarcely aware, when the 
rustic revel has ceased, when the country-folk, the 
lordling musician, the two anxious men, have left, and 
she is alone. She does not remain alone long; once 
more Fitz-Hugh softly enters, and as he approaches 
he sings a love-song, the melody of which furnishes the 
theme that always heralds his approach : — 

' .Sweetest of maids, O deign thou to'hear me, 
While tile full love of my heart I outpour.' 

With an expression of bewildered ecstasy, Edith listens 
to the strain. She remains, like one spell-bound, as 
the singer approaches. He is about to clasp her in 
his arras, when her father's voice calls to her from 
within. With a start the girl awakes as from a trance 
and runs within-doors. 

Fitz-Hugh strolls away singing a careless Tra-la la ! 
The smith comes out of his house angry and anxious ; 
as he watches the retreating figure of the young lord, 
his gestures express the torment of his spirit, and 
the melody of the old ballad floats forth like a spirit- 
voice wailing out a tale of sorrow and dishonour. 

The second act, if less varied in action and in music, 
is more spiritually dramatic. The scene is laid in the 
parlour of the smiths house. It opens with a 
humorous love-passage between Meg (Miss Florence 
Wilton), the smith's servant-girl, and Jack (Mr. O. J. 
Williams), the apprentice. The quaint and elaborate 
melod)' and the by-play in this scene of sparring and 
reconciliation are alike admirably conceived and 
executed. 



Presently the household of the smith assemble round 
the frugal supper-table. Grace is said, to the accom- 
panying strains of the Ave Maria, and all turn towards 
the crucifix hanging against the wall. During the 
realistic recitative talk at supper, the name of the 
lord of the manor is mentioned, and Meg, letting her 
tongue wag, banteringly tells her young mistress she 
might be a lady ' if all that they say is the truth.' 
The smith springs to his feet, as if a serpent had 
stung him, and turns the servants out of the room. 

As he draws his chair close up to the hearth, and 
sits a prey to heart-sickening doubts, Edith kneels by 
his side. The music plays some tender cadences as 
father and daughter look at each other. The tableau 
of the young girl with loosened hair falling about her 
neck, the colour of her dark blue dress, cut square at 
the throat, bringing out the piteous pallor of her face, 
and the stern-visaged father looking down at her with 
wistful trouble, is very touching. Again the ballad 
melody floats above every other sound, and with his 
arm about his child the father sings the .story of the 
Maid of Avondale, who, betrothed to a brave lad, 
betrayed him for the sake of a gay young lord, who 
then forsook her. 

The ballad was given, if not with finished execution, 
yet with poignant expression. There was nothing 
theatrical in its delivery, it was eminently natural. 
Thus any father shrinking from speaking plainly to his 
daughter might sing to her of another's temptation and 
f;dl. As Edith listens, her father's meaning becomes 
clear, and she sinks at his feet with her face hidden in 
her hands. He helps her to rise, and, tenderly em- 
bracing her, he leaves her alone. The music, in troubled 
chords, tells the anguish of temptation that rends 
Edith's soul. She walks across the room, half-stagger- 
ing with the pain of that spiritual conflict, and at last 
drops on a seat by the open window. The moonlight 
shines upon her upturned brow and pale lips as, lying 
almost senseless, her hand pressed against her heart, 
she faintly sings some lines of the ballad she has just 
heard : — 

' He doffed his plumed cap, and there 
Made great pretence of love — 
O Virgin pure, and blessed saints. 
Guard Mary from alcove ! 

The silly maid to him gave heed, 
She fled from home ere morn. 
And now, through all fair Avondale 
Her name 's a name of scorn.' 

With an expression of horror Miss Dene rose to 
her feet and gazed in vacancy as she uttered the last 
word. Then sinking on her knees with a cry, she 
gave as a prayer the last lines of the ballad — 

' From her deep shame, and his hard fate. 
The Lord preserve us all.' 

She has scarce uttered this appeal, when from below 
come the careless notes of a serenade. This caressing 
and superficial melody with its refrain (Tra-la-la !) 




;'^X3' , 




PROFESSOR HERKOMER'S PICTORIAL MUSIC-PLAY 



45 



contrasts with the anguish of Edith's ciy ; we feel 
that the girl has won the victory over her erring heart. 
Fitz-Hugh forces his entrance into the room, but she 
shrinks from his approach. Suddenly the door is flung 
open, and Dick o' the Dale appears ; with a cry Edith 
flies to him for protection. Her betrothed leads her 
gently out, and the two men stand face to face. With 
passionate words, at first contemptuou.sly listened to 
by Fitz-Hugh, the honest working man appeals to him. 

' Beseech thee, tempt her not, my gracious lovd ! 
Beteech thee, tempt her not ! ' 

is the burden of his cry. 

This is perhaps the most dramatic situation of the 
play, and it was ef- 
fectively given by 
the two actors. The 
pale face of Edith, 
peering out of the 
shadow abut the top 
of the staircase, gave 
a touch of pathos to 
the iinpressiveness of 
the scene. 

When Fitz-Hugh, 
without answering, 
turns away, Dick o' 
the Dale, sinking 
down on a chair, lays 
his head down on 
the table and sobs. 
Edith steals softly t: : 

down the stall's, and 
approaches him with 
timid gestures. No 
words pass between 

the lovers ; but as they draw near to each other the 
music plays a moiif, snatches of which have haunted 
the pictorial effects, and to its suave grace a sense of 
peace succeeds to the tumult of discordant passions. 

The interest of the Idyl reaches its climax in the 
second act ; the story then is virtually over. The 
third act furnishes occasion for another beautiful scenic 
effect, for more charming tableaux, and some delicately 
bright and characteristic melodies. The scene is once 
more enacted in the village street, lying in the broad 
freshness of early morning. It is deserted. Presently 
two strolling mummers appear (Messrs. Wehrschmidt 
and D. J. Williams), who sing a fragment of a comical 




old ballad, ' King Arthur lives in merry Carlisle.' The 
humorous exaggeration of the make-up and by-play of 
one of these strolling minstrels was one of the cleverest 
bits of acting in the play. A sound of Gregorian 
chaunts issuing from the church, the peal of joy-bells, 
proclaim the morning to be one of a bridal ; shortly 
after, a troop of children come in strewing the paths with 
flowers, their fresh young voices singing in delightful 
chorus. Then comes the bridal procession : the bride 
and bridegroom are Edith and Dick o' the Dale. 
They come in all the pretty pomp of bridal attire 
— the bride crowned with roses, the bridegroom 
wearing a chaplet of red roses and foliage about his 
neck, both dressed in white. The blacksmith, radiant 

with happiness, 
takes his stand by 
his daughter's side. 
As the villagers 
throng around them, 
once more is heard 
the )Ho/;7'that heralds 
the coming of Lord 
Fitz-Hugh. He ap- 
proaches the newly- 
married couple, and 
Edith shrinks away 
as he draws near. 
Bowing low to, her, 
Fitz-Hugh stretches 
out his hand to the 
bridegroom. There 
'■rv-T,, !• is a moment's hesita- 

tion, and then the 
two men clasp hands. 
When Lord Fitz- 
Hugh has left, the 
songs break forth anew, the men proclaiming the 
beauty of the bride, the women the worthiness of the 
bridegroom. 

The final picture lingers in the mind, for the charm 
of its colouring and the felicity of its grouping, the 
animation of its general effect. The rose-crowned 
bride leans forward, her hand resting on her husband's 
shoulder, smiling her thanks. The crowd shouts 
hurrah, and pelts her and the bridegroom with flowers. 
Thus ends the pictorial music-play, carrying out in 
every detail the master's intention of ajipealing 
to the fancy, and charming the eyes and the 
ears. Alice Corkran. 



It is announced that the Scottish National Portrait Gallery 
will be opened by Lord Lothian, in the new buildings. Queen 
Street, Edinburgh, early in the present month. We believe 
that a feature will be a very full collection of medallion 
portraits of eminent Scotsmen of the end of the last century, 
the work of James Tassie, and of his nephew and successor 
William, and that a curious series of .Scottish portraits in pencil 
of the same period will also be shown. These latter are the 
work of John Brown, the friend of Lord Monboddo, and 
include heads of the founders of the Society of Antiquaries of 
Scotland. 



StJBSCRIPTiONS are being solicited on behalf of a committee 
which is being formed to carry out the scheme for the encourage- 
ment of decorative art in Glasgow. Panels are in progress for the 
Hall of the Discharged Prisoners' Aid Society, and for Broomloan 
Hall, Govan. These are being painted by the following artists : — 
E. A. Walton, J. M, Nairn, A. Roche, W. Kennedy, G. Henry, 
and T. Corsan Morton. It is announced that applications have 
been received from several quarters for similar decorative works. 
Miss Henderson, Secretary of the Decorative Section of the Kyrle 
Society, receives subscriptions. Mr. Newbery, Headmaster of the 
School of Art, Glasgow, acts as Interim Hon. Secy. 



46 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



PARISIAN ART NOTES. 



Paris, y/»;t' 1889. 

M ALBERT BESNARD is still one of the most 
. unfiiirly criticised and best abused among the 
small group of painters who are only appreciated by 
' the chosen few.' His ' Sirene ' at this year's Salon is 
a source of wonder to many, of laughter to others, but 
to the intelligent amateur and to unprejudiced brother- 
artists it is certainly a very remarkable work. M. 
Besnard is, strange as it may appear, an old Prix de 
Rome. In 1874 he competed for the much-coveted 
prize. The subject of the competition picture was 
' The Death of Timophanes, Tyrant of Corinth,' and for 
two months the artist remained en los;e working at this 
interesting subject according to the sacred principles 
of art taught by the professors of the Ecole des Beaux- 
Arts. To his great surprise and that of his friends, he 
carried off the prize. It is also worthy of note that he 
was once upon a time a pupil of Cabanel, though his 
real master was Bremont, a painter who never attained 
celebrity, but who was an admirable professor. At the 
Salon of 1875 he obtained a Third Medal for a charm- 
ing portrait of a young lady. He did not go to Rome 
until 1877, and for three dreary years he remained at 
the Villa Medici, where he vainly tried to turn to 
account the teaching and precepts of the Ecole de 
Rome, then presided over by M. Lenepveu. But 
Besnard's ideas were quite in opposition to classical 
teaching and theories ; so, immediately his three years' 
penance had expired he left the Villa Medici and 
came back to France to marry the daugliter of Dubray, 
the scidptor. It was a love-match, and the very hap- 
piest debut in life the young artist could have possibly 
made ; for Madame Besnard, who is a sculjjtoi- of no 
mean talent, has been the devoted companion, adviser, 
and comforter of her husband during the days of trial 
and discouragement which every artist who strikes out 
a new line for himself has to pass through before he 
can obtain the notice and sympathy of the above- 
mentioned ' chosen few.' M. and Mme. Besnard lived 
for two years in London after their marriage, the wife 
working at her sculpture, her husband at painting. 
Orders began to arrive, and both had work enough in 
hand. Among other pictures, Besnard painted the 
portraits of Lord Wolseley, Sir Bartle Frere, and 
General Henry Green. In these, as in all the artist'.s 
portraits, we perceive his intense study of his model's 
features and expression, the desire to give one a 
glimpse of the inner man, and, allied to this, a very 
striking originality of treatment of the technique of 
his ai-t. Besnard is a great admirer of our leading 
artists, and possesses a perfect knowledge of the past 
and present masters of the English school of painters 
so ignored by many continental artists. 

On his return to France he was much struck by the 
change which was gradu.ally taking place in the theory 



and practice of art, and the very decided reaction 
against the orticial teaching of the Mandarins of the 
Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Bastien-Lepage, Roll, Cazin, 
Degas, and the plcin-air school were coming to the 
fore, and the public was beginning to find out the 
merits of the new school. Without adopting any 
jjarticular testhetic theory in vogue, Besnard con- 
cluded that the great aim of a painter should be to 
represent Nature as we see her, laying aside all con- 
ventionalities. He claims the artist's right to choose 
his particular moment, such as one in which Nature 
reveals herself under an apparently strange and fugi- 
tive aspect, when, by some freak of hers, we see her in 
fantastic visions of light, shade, and colours hitherto un- 
known to us : such are some of Besnard's sunset scenes 
on the Lake of Annecy. The effect has been but a 
fugitive one, lasting only a few seconds, but intensely in- 
teresting for the artist. Why should he not attempt to 
depict on canvas these visions of strange effects of light 
and shade and colour, of apparently chaotic masses of 
clouds of all tints, reflected, with the green mountains 
around, on the placid, blue-tinted ripples of the water 
of the lake ? It is no reason, because you or I have 
never seen such effects, that we should pronounce 
them unreal ; the artist has seen them ; he does his 
utmost, and that right earnestly, to depict the scene 
as he saw it. He may be more or less successful, but 
that is no reason for raising a hue and cry against him, 
and accusing him of wilful deception. All those who 
have had the pleasure of seeing M. Besnard in his 
atelier, and of listening to his remarks on the union of 
Art and Nature as he conceives it, will leave with the 
conviction that never was an artist more sincere in his 
efforts to attain the ideal Nature has revealed to him, 
however strange that ideal may appear to some of us. 
One of the plate illustrations in the June number of 
the Scotliih Art Review was from an original drawing 
which M. Besnard most kindly accorded us the privilege 
of reproducing. 

The exhibition of the works of Barye now on view 
at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts has been organised with 
the purpose of erecting a monument to an artist who, 
like Delacroix and Millet, was ignored by the wise 
ones of his day, but who is now acknowledged to have 
been one of the most remarkable of modern sculptors. 
' Mes confreres en me releguant chez les bfites se sont 
mis au-dessous d'elles,' was Barye's reply to the 
criticisms of his fellow -artists, who pretended he 
could only make bronze ornaments for clocks or paper- 
weights. In November next a similar exhibition will 
be held in New York; the profits realised by the two 
exhibitions are to be handed over to the fund of the 
Barye Monument Committee, at the head of which are 
Mr. Lucas, a rich American amateur, and Barbedienne, 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS 



47 



the celebrated artistic bronze founder. I will not 
attempt to give a detailed account of the exhibition ; 
all I can say is that it presents an almost complete 
collection of Barye's works. 

There are bronze busts and small equestrian statues ; 
marble and bronze figures of animals ; casts, drawings, 
and water-colours, numerous sketches and studies. 
The animals are lifelike in attitude and movement. 
The lions, tigers, and other beasts of prey offer, as the 



(Joncourts have said, ' La plus parfaite representation, 
chez les grands felins, de la succion jouisseuse, de la 
volupte gourmande du sang.' The small bronze tablets, 
paper-weights, and other ornamental pieces, almost all 
representing animals, offer the most beautiful contrasts, 
from the rich, mellow paliiie of the Florentine bronzes 
of the Renaissance period to the dark varnished tints 
of the finest Japanese bronzes. 

C. N. 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS.— I. 




PINKIE HOUSE.— I. 



INKIE HOUSE, 
which architec- 
turally is one of 
the most interest- 
ing and pictur- 
esque of Scottish 
mansions, is situ- 
ated, pleasantly 
embowered in its woods, in 
Midlothian, a little to the 
east of Musselburgh, in the 
midst of an historic locality, 
for near it are the famous 
battlefields of Pinkie, of Car- 
berry, and of Prestonpans. 

It is to Alexander Seton, 
first Earl of Dunfermline, 
President of the Court of 
Session and Chancellor of Scotland, that the house 
o^ves certain of the most striking features which 
constitute it an excellent example of the Scottish 
domestic architecture of the early part of the seven- 
teenth century — a period of transition, when the 
necessity for great military strength had become less 
imperative than was formerly the case, when the 
castle had begun to change into the mansion, and 
when, in consequence of the Union of the Crowns, 
English fashions and features were being introduced 
into Scottish buildings. The Earl, whose biography has 
recently been written in so scholarly a manner by Mr. 
George Seton, was a mighty builder, and to him we 
owe also the still finer Castle of Fyvie, in Aberdeen- 
shire. He acquired Pinkie previous to I6l3; indeed, 
probably before the end of the sixteenth century. At 
this time the mansion seems to have been little more 
than a strongly fortified tower. Much of the adjoining- 
property, especiallj' on the further side of the Esk, 
including the estates of Monkton and Stoneyhill, had 
been owned by the Abbey of Dunfermline, whose 
chapter had worked the coal of the district as early 
as the twelfth century. The massive eastern tower of 
Pinkie, with its strong and curious windinir staircase, 



has been assigned to the fourteenth century by a 
competent ai-chitectural authoritj', and his conjecture 
is confirmed by a deed, of which a copy is in the present 
baronet's possession, where it is stated that the tower 
was raised by the Abbot of Dunfermline in ISgo. The 
Chancellor's chief addition, in the more modern taste 
of his time, was the celebrated Painted Gallery, and 
the fine oriel in the south front which lights it (figured 
in our illustration, page 49), a style of window, evidently 
imported from England, very unusual in Scottish 
architecture, though other examples occur in Htnitly 
Castle, Maybole, and The Earl's Palace, Kirkwall. 
The Chancellor's share in the work is recorded in 
Kingston's Conlmualioii of Maitlaiid's House of Seytoun 
by the statement that ' he acquired the lands of 
Pinkie, where he built ane noble house, brave stone 
dykes about the garden and orchards, with other 
commendable policie about it,' and by a modestly 
phrased inscription — ' Dominus Alexander Setonius 
banc jedificavit, non ad animi sed fortunarum et agelli 
modum, I6l3' — cut upon the front, but now concealed 
by the modern additions about the entrance erected 
in the beginning of the present century. 

As we approach the door of the mansion, our atten- 
tion is arrested by another piece of the Earl's work, by 
the well in the centre of the courtyard (see p. 4S), a 
beautiful and elaborate examjile of Renaissance archi- 
tecture, which, in our own time, has been reproduced 
for the Tweeddale Monument at Haddington. It rises 
to the height of 24 feet, supporting, upon four Roman 
Doric columns and piers connected by rounded arches, 
an open lantern or canopy of four pointed arches, sur- 
mounted by an ornamental vase. The structure is richly 
decorated with the monograms and heraldic devices of 
the Setons, and is inscribed round the sides with a quota- 
tion from Horace : on the south side, f fonte . hoc . 
FRiGiDioR ; on the east, quo nonvel purior . alter; on 
the north, et capiti et memuris ; and on the west, vtilis 
vNDA . FLuiT. We are informed by Sir John Hope that 
this well exhibits the most marked similarity to the 
work of Vignola, who was much employed by the 
Farnese family, and was the architect of their ])alace at 



48 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



Capi-aiolo, near Viterbo ; and Sir John considers it 
probable that Seton, whose early residence and 
education in Italy must have familiarised him with 
foreign artj employed Italian workmen upon this and 
other portions of the Pinkie buildings. 

A recessed or arched bower in the centre of the east 
front of the house — beneath the long row of seven tall 
chimney-stacks which (portrayed in our plate illus- 
tration) are so char- 
acteristic a feature of 
the mansion — bears 
the arms of the Hays 
with the date 1697, 
and was constructed 
after Pinkie (which 
had previously been 
inhabited by another 
lawyer. Lord Clerk- 
Register James Mak- 
gill of Rankeillour, 
who died here in 
1578) had passed in- 
to the possession of 
the Tweeddale fami- 
ly, by whom it was 
held from 169O till 
1778, when it was 
acquired by Sir Archi- 
bald Hope, Bart., of 
Craighall, grand- 
father of the present 
owner. 

Before quitting the 
exterior, we may di- 
rect attention to an 
excellent old four- 
sided Scottish sun- 
dial, built into the 
top of the garden 
wall (see initial let- 
ter). Itissurmounted 
by a finial, resting on 
fourstone balls, which 
is richly carved with 
clusters of fruit and 
ends in a picturesque 
metal pennon. 

The Entrance Hall, a portion of the recent additions 
to the house, contains a superb example of French furni- 
ture, a magnificent cabinet of wood, mounted, in the 
richest Louis Quatorze style, with gilded metal-work ; 
and a companion cabinet, similarly decorated, stands in 
the Inner Hall. Each of the doors of the cabinet is 
adorned with the conventional brass scroll-work of the 
period, the wreaths being surmounted by naked cupids, 
symbolical in their employments of the arts and 
sciences — one of music, one of astronomy, another of 
ai'chitecture, and a fourth of painting and sculpture, 
the rather decollete bust, which is being chiselled by the 




chubby children in the last compartment, showing, we 
believe, the features of Madame de Maintenon. Accord- 
ing to family tradition these splendid pieces of cabinet- 
makers' work formed part of a set including the 
celebrated coin-cabinet which, on account of its con- 
tents, was purchased by the Society of Antiquaries of 
Scotland from the Faculty of Advocates, with the 
view of completing the numismatic collection of their 

Museum. At the 
time of its purchase 
the value of the cab- 
inet was estimated 
at £50; but gradu- 
ally its excellence, 
as an example of 
French art of the 
early eighteenth cen- 
tury, came to be re- 
cognised, and in 1 881 
it was sold for the 
sum of £3500, an 
amount which, ever 
since, has furnished 
the Antiquaries with 
a much-needed little 
fund for the exten- 
sion of their Museum. 
The coin-cabinet is 
understood to have 
afterwards changed 
hands several times, 
always at a very sub- 
stantially increased 
price, and to have 
found a final home in 
the collection of a 
member of the Roth- 
schild family. It 
would appear that 
the two pieces at 
Pinkie were exe- 
cuted, by order of 
Louis XIV., to contain 
a set of Sevres china 
which he intended 
as a gift to Charles 
II. of Spain ; but the 
relations between the monarchs having become less 
cordial, the idea of presentation was abandoned, the 
cabinets were exposed for sale in Paris, and were pur- 
chased by Thomas Hope, a physician, third son of 
the eighth baronet, and by him bequeathed to his 
nephew Sir Archibald. 

On our way to the Dining-room we pass through a 
small anteroom, where an excellent impression of 
Seymour Haden's ' Breaking up of the Agamemnon,' 
and a photograph of the vessel as she appeared off 
Naples in I76O, remind us that Rear-Admiral Thomas 
Hope, a late brother of the present baronet's, 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS 



49 



was the last commander of this famous old ship-of- 
war. 

In the Dining-room, which has been modernised, and 
])resents few of its original features with the exception 
of the fine oriel at its end, are hung the greater part 
of the more interesting family portraits, though that 
of Sir Thomas Hope, the founder of the house, is in 
the Drawing-room, and will be referred to when we 
come to deal with that apartment. The family por- 
traits at Pinkie may 
be said to present us, 
in brief, with a conse- 
cutive view of the his- 
tory of portraiture in 
our country, for they 
include examples of 
many of our best- 
known portraitists 
from the days of 
Jamesone to those of 
Raeburn and of his 
pupil Syme. 

The portrait of Sir 
Thomas's son, Sir John 
Hope, the second bar- 
onet, a characteristic 
and well-preserved ex- 
ample of George 
Jamesone, hangs in 
the Dining-room. It 
is a bust-portrait, the 
face being turned in 
three-quarters to the 
right. He is repre- 
sented as a man com- 
paratively young, with 
a bright and intelli- 
gent face, a profusion 
of dark brown hair, 
dark eyes and eye- 
brows, and a short 
moustache. The cos- 
tume is a black doublet 
slashed with white at 
the breast and sleeves, 

with a round white collar, and the picture in every 
part, especially in the dress, bears evident traces of 
Jamesone's brush. Sir John Hope was a personage 
who played an active part in the history of his time. 
In 1632 he was appointed a Lord of Session, with the 
title of Lord Craighall, and the origin of the right 
claimed by the Lord Advocate to plead covered before 
the Bench is commonly stated — though the assertion 
is a more than doubtful one — to have arisen from the 
fact that he and his two brothers were judges during the 
time that his father held the office of King's Advocate. 
In 1638 Lord Craighall refused to take the king's 
covenant, until it should have been explained by the 
General Assembly; in 1640 he was a member of the 

VOL. II. 



-^r- 



Committee of Estates; in 16-14 a commissioner for 
the planting of churches ; and in l645 he was sworn 
a Privy Councillor. In 1651 his brother. Sir James 
Hope of Hopetoun, was accused of having advised 
Charles ii. to make certain concessions to Cromwell, 
and pled that the recommendation was Lord Craig- 
hall's, who had advised that the king should ' treat 
with Cromwell for the one-halff of his cloake before 
he lost the quhole.' Craighall was cited to appear 

and answerthe charge, 
but no further action 
seems to have been 
taken in the matter. 
He became a commis- 
sioner for the admini- 
stration of justice, and 
appears to have acted 
as president of the 
court ; and he died in 
Edinburgh in 1654. 

The portrait of his 
wife, Margaret, daugh- 
ter of Sir Archibald 
Murray of Blackbar- 
ony, a fair-haired, 
hazel-eyed lady, with 
an individual face, is 
also an excellent 
Jamesone, and especi- 
ally interesting as an 
example of the cos- 
tume of the period. 
She wears a stiff mus- 
lin collar, standing out 
on each side : the 
dress is of brown, rich- 
ly brocaded in gold 
and colours, worn low 
at the breast, where 
another space of stiff 
muslin appears, and is 
fastened with a red 
rosette of ribbons. 
Large pearl earrings 
are worn, and from 
each a larger pearl depends by a black cord. A deli- 
cate necklace of gold and black enamel, with a pendant 
of dark stones, hung round the neck by another black 
cord, complete the decorations of this old-world lady. 
Above this picture is placed a most typical and 
unmistakable example of the portraiture of Sir John 
Medina, the painter who was patronised and introduced 
into Scotland by David, Earl of Leven, about 168S, 
and whose works are to be found in most of our 
Scottish mansions. This is a portrait of Sir Thomas 
Hope, who passed advocate in 1701, and succeeded 
his cousin as eighth baronet in 1766. He occupied 
himself much in improving his estates, and drained the 
lands to the east of the Meadows of Edinburgh, where 

G 




50 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



-^■* 



i^ 



// 



'-■^^, 



h 



Hope Park Crescent and Terrace still witness to the 
fact by bearing the family name. He was member of 
Parliament for the county of Fife, and constantly voted 
against the Union. An ardent Jacobite, he was 'out' 
in the '15, and in consequence was obliged to seek 
refuge in Holland with his kinsfolk, the Hopes of 
Amsterdam. In the present portrait, an oval, he 
appears in the long curling wig of the time, with a 
round, well-conditioned face, a clear-cut mouth, dimpled 
at the corners, and dai'k eyes and eyebrows, the 
costume being the 
usual white cravat and 
a crimson gown lined 
with blue — an opposi- 
tion of positive colours 
very characteristic of 
Medina's work. 

The companion por- 
trait of his wife, Mar- 
garet, eldest daughter 
of Ninian Lowis of 
Merchiston, is even a 
more successful ex- 
ample of the same 
painter ; indeed we 
should rank it as, on 
the whole, the very 
best of the many por- 
traits by Medina that 
we have examined. 
There is great dignity 
and beauty in the little 
head set so daintily on 
the slender neck, with 
the soft brown hair 
rising above the fore- 
head, and sweeping in 
a great curl over the 
lady's right shoulder ; 
and the loose gown of 
the period — crimson 
lined with blue, the 
rippling whiteness of 
the undergarments set 

against the delicate flesh-tints of the breast, and the 
blue mantle laid o\'er the left shoulder, are excellently 
managed. 

Beneath these portraits of Sir Thomas Hope and his 
lady hangs the likeness of their son, Archibald Hope, 
younger of Craighall, and that of his wife, a daughter of 
Dr. Hugh Todd, both by yVUan Ramsay. The former is 
a fair average specimen of the artist's male portraiture, 
the face solidly modelled and thoroughly painted, if 
a little hard and bricky in the tone of its flesh. The 
lips are fine and clear-cut, the nose prominent, the 
eyebrows dark and bushy, and the head surmounted 
by a short grey wig, the dress being a grey velvet 
coat, single-breasted, and disclosing a blue vest embroi- 
dered with silver. Like his father, whom he pre- 



deceased iir 1769, Archibald Hope was an enthusiastic 
Jacobite. In his turn he was concerned in the Rebel- 
lion of 174.9, and was present at Culloden — as a civilian, 
however, not as a combatant. After the defeat he was in 
imminent danger of being captured, and was driven to 
the strangest expedients in order to secure his safety. 
Finally, he took refuge in — of all places — the Edinburgh 
Tolbooih, where he was concealed by a friendly turn- 



key who had been 
Rankeillor. Here 



\ 




a tenant on his father's estate of 
he had the grim satisfaction of 
learning day by day 
of the capture of his 
Jacobite friends, — 'So- 
and-so was secured this 
morning, and so-and- 
so ; but as for that 
young Hope of Ran- 
keillour, we can hear 
\^^;^ ' nothing of him ! ' At 
length advice was re- 
ceived that a vessel 
was about to leave 
Leith for Holland, and 
Hope quietly walked 
away from the ' sweet 
security ' of his prison, 
safely embarked, and 
was sheltered and be- 
friended — as his father 
had been thirty years 
before — by his Amster- 
dam cousins. 

The portrait of his 
lady shows a portly 
dame, with rich masses 
of dark brown hair 
touched here and there 
with the soft gleam of 
a string of pearls, dark 
brown eyes, a full, 
rounded chin, and a 
little mouth evincing 
the most determined 
resolution. The col- 
ours of the costume, the blue ribbons and the purple 
mantle, are pleasingly harmonised with the dress of 
white satin, a dress rendered in that accomplished man- 
ner with which Ramsay's female portraits — notably his 
full-length of Lady Mary Coke — have so often made us 
familiar. The lady was as staunch a Jacobite as her 
husband, and, to boot, a most uncompromising Episco- 
palian, for she had been trained under Atterbury, who 
was Dean of Carlisle when her father was a canon. 
An amusing anecdote of her peculiarities used to be 
told by her son, the ninth baronet, to his daughters, 
who communicated the story to their nephew, the 
present owner of Pinkie. In advanced life, when a 
Avidow, she resided near her son ; and he, hearing one 
day that his mother ' had somewhat against him,' 








b 









I 



~^ti 



8 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS 



61 



resolved to visit her and make his peace. The inter- 
view progressed in the most satisfactory fashion, in the 
interchange of old-world courtesy, and Sir Archibald, 
thinking that the imperious lady was in her best of 
humours, rose to bid her adieu. But he was arrested 
by his mother remarking, in her mildest tone, 'I've 
something to say to you, Archie, if you can just sit 
down for a minute.' His chair was resumed, and she 
continued — ' I hear, Archie, that you were seen in the 
parish kirk on Sunday.' Truth obliged Sir Archibald 
to admit that he had been one of the Presbyterian 
worshippers : and then she went on, still in her most 
softly modulated voice, ' I just wanted to tell you 
that if I hear you 've been seen there again the same 
room will never be able to hold you and me both.' 
' Very well, m 'am,' rejoined the good baronet — 
courteously, though with unsatisfactory indefinitencss 
— taking his leave : ' But,' he used to add, in telling 
the story to his daughters, ' I never went to the parish 
kirk again, for I knew she would keep her word.' 

The likenesses of her son. Sir Archibald, the ninth 
baronet, and his wife, are two verj' typical e.xamples 
of the portraiture of David Martin, a pupil of Ramsay's 
— his favourite pupil ' Davie ' — whom the master 
summoned to join him in Italj', with his drawings, 
' to show ' the president and scholars of the Roman 
Academy ' how we draw in England.' The likeness of 
Sir Archibald exhibits the strong, definite, and not 
very refined colouring which characterises the male 
portraits of this painter. His sitter is clad in a brilliant 
scarlet coat, turned out with green and embroidered 
with silver at the button-holes, and on his breast the 
Nova Scotia badge is suspended by its orange ribbon. 
The head is rounded, and wears a short grey wig ; the 
eyes are hazel, the features by no means finel}' chiselled, 
and the chin double. The portrait gives us a very good 
idea of the shrewd, practical personage that the 
baronet was, a worthy country gentleman, devoted to 
the improvement of his estates, establishing salt and 
coal works, and ruling his rude dependants in a 
despotic, but not unkindly, fashion. He was an 
enthusiastic sportsman, president of the Caledonian 
Hunt in 17S9, and, in his day, kept kennels and stables 
at Pinkie. His burly figure and strong face were 
portrayed by Kay in an etching titled ' The Knight of 
the Turf,' where he appears, booted and spurred, 
leaning against his horse's neck. 

The portrait of Elizabeth Patoun, his second wife, 
has more of that grace which Martin reserved for his 
female likenesses. She is clad in filmy, greyish white 
drapery, her masses of brown hair brushed high above 
her forehead, and falling in heavy curls round her 
neck and shoulders. 



A few other portraits hang in the dining-room, 
representing various personages more or less connected 
with the family of Hope. Two of them are attributed 
to Jamesone ; and of these the likeness of Jane, a 
daughter of the seventh Lord Gray, who, in 1()10, 
married John, first Earl of Wemyss, is a genuine and 
characteristic example of that painter, the costume 
of black, slashed with white, being painted with a cer- 
tain peculiar tone, a delicate silvery shimmer, which is 
like the sign-manual of the artist to those who 
are familiar with his work. The picture that hangs 
above it is titled on the back, certainly in error, ' Sir 
Hugh Wallace of Woolmet, Knight, about l6'30, 
Jamesone.' It cannot possibly be the work of the 
painter named, for the whole costume — the long, 
curling, light brown wig which surmounts the regular- 
featured, blue-eyed face, the large rose-coloured rosette 
at the throat, and the cravat and gown of dark blue 
figured with gold — is of a period not earlier than the 
time of Charles ii. Judging from its style, we believe 
it to be the work of a French artist. 

Of Sir Archibald Hope of Rankeillour, second son 
of Lord Craighall, raised to the bench as Lord 
Rankeillour in 1689, and knighted by King William, 
we have an interesting three-quarters length by Sir 
John Medina, — a picture showing him clad in red 
judge's robes, with a resolute face, strong aquiline 
nose, a firm mouth with curved lips, hazel eyes, and a 
chin well rounded and slightly dimpled. In his right 
hand he holds advanced a bundle of law-papers, his 
left rests on a parapet, sustaining a vellum-bound 
volume, and holding a handkerchief, and behind 
are columns and curtains and a glimpse of land- 
scape. 

The companion work, a seated portrait of his wife 
dressed in an elaborate costume, is also ascribed to 
Medina. Probably it is one of those works of which 
Walpole tells us that the painter came to Scotland 
' carrying with him a large number of bodies and 
postures, to which he painted heads.' 

To our left, at the oriel window, hangs another inter- 
esting portrait assigned to Medina, though the style 
both of flesh and costume is more suggestive of Lely. 
This oval picture shows a buxom lady, richly dressed, 
and with wide expanse of face and breast. She is 
Lady Margaret Leslie, daughter of John, fifth Earl 
of Rothes, who was successively wife to James, Lord 
Balgonie, to Francis, Earl of Buccleuch, and to David, 
second Earl of Wemyss, and from whom, accordingly, 
are descended the noble Scottish houses of Leven and 
Melville, Buccleuch, and Wemyss. 

J. M. Grav. 
(To he continued.) 



PADDY ()" THE PIT: AN ECCENTRIC OLD DOMINIE 



53 



PADDY O' THE PIT: AN ECCENTllIC OLD DOMINIE. 



THE Dominie is now almost deiid ; at least, the 
species is as rare as the Osprey, only a few 
specimens lingering in out of the way corners. He 
has been killed by the wheels of progress, which have 
in education, as in most else, ruthlessly destroyed the 
picturesque things of an older time. He was cer- 
tainly more pictur- 
esque than his modem 
representative, in 
person, speech, and 
manner, and, though 
less ' proper,' had 
more individuality 
and character. 

The old 'dominie' 
has frequently been 
painted by his pupils ; 
sometimes lovingly, 
sometimes adversely, 
as memory recalled 
pleasure or pain in 
the picture of their 
school-days. 'Paddy' 
was, happily, an nn 
common example. In 
spite of his name and 
nationality, he ruled 
a Scotch school, and 
gave law and lashings 
to Scotch loons. 

Not far from famed 
Tantallon, and be- 
tween it and North 
Berwick, stands the 
little hamlet of Half- 
lin Barns, with its 
smithy and carpen- 
ter's shop. It com- 
mands one of the 
widest of prospects — 
from the Lammers to 
the Lomonds, from 
St. Abb's Head to 

Fifeness, with distant glimpses of the Highland hills 
up the gleaming Firth, and nearer sights of such 
striking points as the Bass and the May, the Castle, 
and the curious cone of the Law. 

The place has also its school, which has been there 
for generations, having attached to it a parcel of 
ground called ' the Glebe,' which points to ecclesias- 
tical possession in Catholic days. The old, and still 
common, name of the village is 'The Pit'; though 
why so strangely designated no one can say, for 
it is on the highest point in the district, and out 
of the region of coal. The present school premises 




are up to the times, and are palatial compared 
with the past. At the beginning of the century 
they were certainly poor enough — a single-storied 
wooden house, with the dwelling at the one end 
and the schoolroom at the other, and the ' Glebe ' 
garden behind, cultivated by the teacher. 

After Waterloo, the 
schoolmaster there 
" was an Irish soldier, 

who had somehow 
turned his wandering 
feet towards Tantal- 
lon's towers, and 
settled down in the 
old schoolhouse at 
' The Pit,' with a wife 
and family. Those 
were the times when 
teaching was yet the 
refuge of the waifs 
and strays of society, 
and a wooden leg or 
a broken arm — the 
head not being 
counted in the reckon- 
ing — was a sufficient 
certificate of scholas- 
tic proficiency. His 
name was Richard — 
the surname is im- 
material — contracted 
by the boys into 
' Dick,' ' Dick the 
Dominie ' ; but, being 
from Erin, for his 
tongue did not belie 
him, he was generally 
known as ' Paddy o' 
The Pit,' or, curtly, 
' Paddy.' 

This being the only 
school in the neigh- 
bourhood out of North 
Berwick, it was well attended ; for the folks wanted 
their bairns educated, and took the best they could 
get. Some forty children were crowded into the 
low-roofed, seething hovel. The seminary speedily 
became famous for the teaching of writing, and still 
more for counting, though little else was done. 
Paddy's success in these subjects was so great that the 
scholars came from far, and he also conducted an 
evening school in Berwick. Of his teaching of writing 
he was pardonably proud, and not slow to say it, telling 
all and sundry that one of his pupils, Nanse Lear- 
month, ' could write as well as Lady Haddington, 



54 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



biyod ! ' Reading receivetl comparatively little atten- 
tion, and meaning none at all, the garden getting the 
time for cultivation that should have gone to the mind. 

Dick was none of your ' war-broken soldiers,' but 
sound in wind and limb, and able to wield both with a 
vigour that made him fearful to all, and terrible to 
transgressors. He was short, thick -set, and strong, show- 
ing a countenance not unpleasant when in repose, and 
a decidedly Irish nose and lip. He had an unmistak- 
able brogue, and a keen and witty tongue, pointed as 
a poniard against hapless offenders. Like most old 
warriors, he adorned his speech with expletives not now 
the rule in school, the simplest being ' biyod,' a short 
but transparent oath, constantly spluttered out in sur- 
prise, fun, or fury. His Celtic irascibility was like 
tinder, aflame in an instant, and was increased by 
over-potent draughts of potheen. Happily for his 
flock, he was rather deaf, a defect they took full 
advantage of, as frequent occasion offered. 

A big fire burned under a huge projecting chimney ; 
the pupils occupied forms and ink-stained tables on one 
side of the room ; and the master, with a mighty pair 
of tawse, either hanging to his button or easily within 
reach, sat at an old-fashioned desk before them, in the 
middle of the floor. 

Unlike the orderly practice of the present, the 
children were allowed full freedom in the school during 
intervals, except when Dick himself was present. At 
assembling, the fun was fast and furious, all bustling, 
shouting, running over the desks, or crushing round the 
fire. Suddenly above the racket a threatening yell 
and a thundering sla)) with the tag would announce the 
arrival of the potentate. This was followed by an instan- 
taneous lull, and a hurried rush to places over desk and 
form, precipitated by sundry howls from sufferers in 
the rear, on whom descended the angry scourge. 
When a boy of seven, the present stalwart and intelli- 
gent smith was sent one morning to Paddy's school. 
On entering, the fun was famous, but the abrupt splash 
of the schoolmaster into the seething crowd, the 
terrible sound of his strap, and his fierce aspect and 
voice so frightened the little lad that, in spite of 
friendly attractions, nothing could induce him to 
return, and his father had to send him to North Ber- 
wick, some miles off, at a fee of five shillings a quarter, 
then a large sum for tuition, as the price of his terror. 

The year after Waterloo, a new tenant entered on 
the fai-m of Castleton, close by Tantallon. His 
manager, Joseph Morris, brought with him a family, 
who requii-ed to be educated, and two of them went to 
The Pit. The younger, John, one of the best endowed 
men I have ever known, of whom the world may yet 
hear more, then about ten years old, was a quiet, well- 
behaved lad, attentive and careful. His elder brother, 
Robert, was clever, restless, tricky, alwaj'S in scrapes, a 
trouble to his teacher, but a favourite with his fellows. 
Bob was a capital carver with his knife, and a budding 
poet, lampooning with rude ability the whole neigh- 
bourhood, and not sparing the dominie. One of his 



verses, cataloguing those who were unpopular with the 
boys, they used to howl in chorus — 

' Archie Kinlay's broken shoon, 
Paddy o' the Pit, 
Geordie Hogg o' Castleton, 
Kate Lister in the kit.' 

Archie was the local cobbler, whose patching and 
pepperiness did not please the boys ; Geordie, the 
head ploughman at Castleton, who used his whip too 
freely for their liking ; and Kate, a little, cankered old 
body, without sympathy for bairns, especially on 
washing-days, when busy in the ' kit ' or tub. 

In school there were no regular classes, the time 
being mostly spent in writing copies and working 
counts. Teaching was carried on in a continuous 
clamour of voices, greater than the master's deafness, 
broken at intervals by a yell for silence, a slap on the 
desk with the tawse, a howl from a pupil oppressed by 
his companion, or a breathless hush as a culprit was 
flogged. When reading was taken, each scholar came 
up to the master's side, and read at the pitch of his 
voice from the book laid on Dick's knees, while his 
arm encircled the child's neck or waist. If an error 
was made, the arm tightened forcibly, according to the 
amount of mistake, and often gave a painful squeeze, 
worse than a thrashing. The position, though appa- 
rently loving, was anything but pleasant, from its 
nearness to such a dread personage, his bristly beard, 
the fumes of his spirit-laden breath, his unwashed 
face, and the fear of punishment. 

Paddy's ride was as variable as his temper 
was uncertain, a mixture of laxness and severity, 
increased by the worship of Bacchus, though re- 
lieved by flashes of Hibernian humour. He seldom 
washed, and his beard was allowed to grow like 
stubble ; but when he did ' clean himself,' he felt so 
virtuous that he called his scholars' attention to the 
feat, and exhorted them to like habits of tidiness ! 
When he wished a rest, a frequent need after dinner 
and its accompaniments, he would suddenly quell the 
din by howling out, ' Stop ! good boys, good boys ! 
read five chapters and get home.' This was from the 
Bible, with which, amidst increasing crush and clamour, 
all gladly furnished themselves from their bags below 
the desks. They read all together, generally from 
the Old Testament, at the top of their pipes, while he 
walked to and fro in front, whistling the while, in 
merry mood, his hands clasped under his ragged coat, 
and the strap hanging from them like a tail behind — 
surely a scorpion's ! 

Taking advantage of his deafness and drowsiness, 
and led by some wag, like the irrepressible Bob, the 
boys used gravely to utter all kinds of nonsense, especi- 
ally Robert's rhymes, with remarks not very flattering 
to himself; but when he came too near them in his 
peripatetic turns, they suddenly changed their tune, 
and called aloud, with ostentatious distinctness, some 
well-known verse like, ' And the Lord said inito Moses, 



PADDY O' THE PIT: AN ECCENTRIC OLD DOMINIE 



55 



Say thou unto the children of Israel.' This undoubtedly 
orthodox passage satisfied the presiding genius that all 
was well, though, at his retreat, they at once turned 
to local matters with twinkling eyes, and made Deity 
utter strange things. 

Indulgences grew on the vigorous Irish dominie ; for 
he needed something to cheer a task painfullj' irksome 
to one of such ardent temperament, accustomed so 
long to a soldier's active life in the field during those 
troublous times. His good wife, Betty, kept guard over 
the bottle within the house, but could not stand sentry 
without, especially when her errant spouse went to 
town. She was, however, long surprised at his fuddled 
condition in the afternoons, though there had been 
nothing but water to dinner. The secret in time was 
discovered — not only by her, but by the scholars — of a 
certain flask kept at the foot of a bush in the garden, 
which was applied to when the schoolmaster ostensibly 
went there to look after the potatoes. 

One dark night he returned from his night class at 
Berwick pale and excited, and, sinking into a chair, 
cried, in faltering fear, that he had been shot by a 
ruffian in the head, and that the blood was still stream- 
ing down his back. A hurried investigation by the 
alarmed wife soon cleared up the catastrophe. The 
victim had been commissioned by Betty to bring from 
the brewery a bottle of ' barm ' for her baking. This 
he had duly put into his side pocket when he set out for 
home. The heat of his body, increased by his pota- 
tions and walk, caused it to swell, and, exploding with 
a loud report, the cork went bang against his head. 
Being tipsier than usual, he fell plump into the way- 
side ditch, where he naturally concluded he had been 
fired upon, a theory which the effervescing liquor 
trickling down his clothes made quite conclusive ! 

One day affairs came to a crisis with frolicsome Bob 
Morris, whose fire and fun neither his sober brother 
nor any one else outside his home could restrain. He 
got into a sci'ape with his pugnacious preceptor by 
playing some trick on a companion, which caused him 
to howl out. Richard was not in good humour, and he 
proclaimed, 'That boy Morris is the wildest fellow in 
school ; but I '11 thrash him till he 's as black as my 
hat ; that I will, by God I ' But this being in the 
somnolent afternoon, the punishment was postponed 
till the next day. 

Undismayed, Bob fearlessly returned to the fray, 
and the comedy was witnessed by an unusual crowd 
with special curiosity ; for the culprit had confiden- 
tially disclosed his preparations for the ordeal, the 
stuffing of his garments with straw, especially on 
vulnerable points in the rear. The master, who had 
fortified himself by a visit to the garden, true to his 
word, gave him a savage beating, which was borne 
without sound or sign of flinching, though, being a stout 
fellow of fourteen. Bob might have defied him, till, 
under rising rage, the tyrant struck the lad with his 
long strap round the ears. This was too much, and a 
rebellious cry burst from the sufferer that it was 



unfair, and that he would stand anything on the body 
but not on the head. Increasing fury only redoubled 
the cowardly blows, and the boy, jumping on to the 
desk, leaped in an instant to the top of the projecting 
fireplace to save himself. Now began a strange but 
most unequal fight, — the man, ungovernable, hurling 
with fearful words from below furious blows at the 
barefooted lad above, and he dancing with pain, and 
striking with his feet at his assailant, in self-protec- 
tion. Meanwhile the traitorous straw issued from his 
clothes, covering the teacher and the floor, and the 
excited pupils on forms and tables crowded round 
the combatants, and encouraged their champion with 
vigorous yells. It was an extraordinary and miserable 
scene, but one not very rare in ' the good old days ' of 
the reign of terror in the schoolroom. 

A compromise had to be come to, and the exhausted 
dominie capitulated. Bob descended amid the silence 
of his fellows, who viewed him as a hero, and he left 
the school, never more to return. His dismissal they 
truly mourned, for he was idolised, and all the more 
for his tricksome fun. The story of the encounter, 
with many embellishments, ran round the country, 
much more to the pupil's prowess than to the school- 
master's credit. 

Poor, brave Bob ! He went to service, but, restless 
and adventurous, soon enlisted in the army, becoming 
one of the handsomest of soldiers, six feet two in his 
stockings. Everywhere an immense favourite, he was 
not only cock of the school, but of every company he 
entered, being warm-hearted, witty, and so winsome 
that, as his sister used to say, ' he cu'd hae drawn the 
very laverocks frae the lift.' Erratic but able, his life 
was varied and eventful. He captivated the heart of 
a young lady of position at a boarding-school, who ran 
off' with him to Gretna Green, and made him a very 
good wife, till, to his intense grief, she died an early 
death. Had he been as prudent as he was polite, he 
might have worn a gold epaulet, as his colonel often 
told him. As it was, he became a sergeant. Peace be 
with his wayward ashes ! 

Such is a picture — in some features happily oulrc in 
this case — of the school-life common in the counti-y for 
generations. What a contrast that side-school to its 
successor on the same site — under Government survey, 
with special payments for tone and order, and encour- 
agements to broad and efficient teaching ! 

Still, with all his faults, Dick taught some things 
well, and Bob's brother, John, got from him an insight 
into arithmetic he had failed to receive under better 
conditions in the parish school of Dalmeny. With his 
good wife Peggy's thrifty management Paddy brought 
up a large family, who did well in the world. 

It is happy for the country, truly very happy, that 
all this is past, for its picturesqueness was poor com- 
pensation for its pain and poverty. A better time in 
education has dawned. May it speedily grow to fuller 
day ! 

William Jolly. 



56 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



JNIEDIEVAL WAYFARERS. 



ONE of the most interesting of the many recent 
books on Economic History is M. Jusserand's 
English Wayfarivg Life in the Middle Ages.^ The work 
was originally published in French in 1S84, and now it 
has been translated into English by Miss Lucy 
Toulmin Smith, and amplified by the author. The 
English edition, published by Mr. T. Fisher Unwin, to 
whose kindness we are indebted for the accompanying 
illustrations, is a handsome book copiously illustrated 
with pictures of medieval life, many of them being 
from miniature drawings and illuminations in fourteenth 
century manuscripts. 

M. Jusserand's book is a collection from sources 
well known to historical students — the Rolls of Parlia- 
ment, the reports of the Historical Manuscripts Com- 
mission, and the publications of Antiquarian Societies 
— of material bearing upon wayfaring life in the 
fourteenth century. The book is thus essentially a 
popular study, although students alike of history and 
economics will find much that is useful to them, 
and ^\:11 find arranged what otherwise would cost 
them much research to find at all. 

Nowadays the railway and the steamboat have 
driven the wayfarer off the road. In the fourteenth 
century every one who travelled was a wayfarer, but 
few travelled unless with serious intent of business, 
and thus the wayfai'ers fell into distinct categories. 
There was the knight journeying on his way to or 
from London, the begging friar, the pardoner, the 
pilgrim, the pedlar, — in brief there might be found on 
almost any road the company whose portraits have 
been painted for all time by the most famous of all 
medieval wayfarers — Geoffrey Chaucer. The wayfarers, 
to whatever categoiy they belonged, were vendors at 
once of private and public news. In a few villages 
and in many farms in England and Scotland, remote 
from railways, and reached only by postgig every other 
day, one still finds in the kitchen, resting after a long 
day's walk, the egg-wife, who is the survival of the 
wayfarer of the middle ages. Like her prototype she 
retails the news, sometimes flavoured with scandal, 
and she reflects not unfairly the public opinion of her 
district. This also did those who, in medieval times, 
travelling from county to county, helped to unite to- 
gether in common interests the widely separated, self- 
sufficing, and heterogeneous groups which comprised 
the English people. 

The general feeling of movement which one finds 
to characterise the England of the fourteenth cen- 
tury may be traced to several causes, but among the 
incidents of this movement, having a certain effect 
upon it bj' way of reaction, there was the then recent 

^ English Wayfaring Life in the Middle Ages (14th century). 
By J.-J. Jusserand. Translated by Lucy Toulmin Smith. London: 
T. Fisher Unwin, 1889. 



practical abolition of serfdom. That is to say, that 
the system which had demanded on behalf of the 
lord of the manorial domain a stated term of labour 
from those who held their lands or their stock of 
him, gave way before the system in which this com- 
pulsory labour was compounded for by a payment in 
kind or money. This step in the direction of fi-eedom 
had an important economic effect. Those who had 
been attached as serfs to the soil of their lord, sure of 
their support, since their lord was responsible for it, 
now found that freedom brought with it inconveni- 
ences as well as benefits. If they were unable 
to secure land enough to live on, or if for any reason 
they had become landless, and were unable to enter a 
craft in a town, they were literally without status. Their 
movements were impeded by vagabond laws, which 
wei"e frequently executed with a merciless severity by 
those who found it hard to relinquish the powers of pit 
and gallows. Thus the wayfarer was often an outlaw. 

The first need of a wayfarer is a road, and in 
England, thanks to the Romans, there were good 
roads even before our Saxon forefathers came to it. 
These were the Fosse, running like an arrow from 
Somersetshire to Lincoln ; the Icknield Way, from the 
Chiltern Hills into Norfolk ; and the Ermine Street, 
partly Roman and partly Saxon, from London to York 
and the Noith. The Roman road, traversing the 
country in a bee-line, over hills and across rivers, by 
ford or bridge, was the basis of all subsequent road- 
making. Solidly constructed in five courses — Pavi- 
mentura, Statumen, Ruderatio, Nucleus, and Summum 
Dorsum — it has in some places survived wear and 
tear sufficiently to show its construction to this day. 
The repair of the roads, like most of the social func- 
tions in the middle ages, was sanctified as a religious 
work. Nearly all religious observances have, or had, 
an economic basis ; and thus, in an age when social 
and religious feelings were strong and closely allied, 
it was natural that the maintenance of the roads for 
social use should be undertaken by a religious order. 
Thus the Pontife brothers were established in the 
twelfth century. 

The historical notes upon famous English bridges 
given by M. Jusserand are full of interest. The 
endowment of bridges, the rise of tolls, and other 
incidents of social development in this connection are 
extremely instructive. 

The pictures of the ordinary traveller, the pilgrim, 
the pardoner, the outlaw, whose case we have already 
noticed, the wandering preacher, and the other way- 
farers on road and in inn or castle hall, enable us to 
realise fairly vividly what sort of folks our forefathers 
were. The old stories show, on the whole, that virtue 
and vice, cruelty and kindness, nobility and meanness, 
were, in the middle ages, pretty much as common, or 



MEDIEVAL WAYFAKERS 



57 




A FAMILY DINNER. 










TRAVELLING BY SEA IN THE FOURTEENTH CEXTURY, 



58 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



as rare, as now. We have improved vastly in comfort- 
able surroundings, but we might perhaps gain a good 
deal by being touched with the medieval temper. 
One illustration represents a family dinner in the hall. 
The master and his wife sit at table with their chil- 
dren. There are two musicians and three servants — a 
carver, a cupbearer, and the hall marshal. The 
marshal is in the act of expelling a lazar who had 
intruded on the pretence of sprinkling the family 
with holy water, which he carries in a vessel in 
his hand. No forks are used at table ; the left hand 
grasps the object to be cut. The attention of the 
carver seems to have been distracted by the dis- 
turbance at the door of the hall, for he looks in that 
direction in a feeble manner, while a dog relieves 
his table of a dish of fish. The house-master seems 
to be pointing contemptuouslj' towards the beggar, 
while his wife makes a gesture of expostulation. 
The other illustration, 'Travelling by sea in the four- 
teenth century,' is from the Harleian mss. Three 
ships are represented, the occasion being the return 
of Richard ii. from Ireland. Richard was twice in 



Ireland, and this appears to represent his return from 
his second visit in 1399, when he went on the usual 
errand, the errand of a would-be governor of a countrj' 
that never has been governed. The King is said to 
have landed at Beaumaris in Wales, where he was 
ti'eacherously deprived of his troo})S, and where he 
wandered for some time as a fugitive, and finally was 
captured by the Duke of Lancaster, lodged in the 
Tower, and forced to renounce his crown. The ships 
in which Richard came over from Ireland are said to 
be similar to those which now ply on the Red Sea in 
the annual pilgrim traffic. The sailors of the time seem 
to have possessed the traditional humour of the shell- 
back. A Compostella pilgrim, whose story is quoted 
by M. Jusserand, is disgusted by a sailor shouting to 
some pilgrim passengers suifering seriously from mal 
de mer, ' Be mery ; ye shall have a storme or a pery ' 
(squall). 

There are nianj' good medieval stories and many 
historical and social side lights in M. Jusserand's 
volume. 



ORATORS' ENGLISH. 



IN these pages, happily, we have nothing to do with 
politics. For that vei'y reason we are at liberty 
to deal freely with a matter which, relating as it does 
to politics in the concrete, cannot be discussed freely 
or dispassionately in the political journals — the ques- 
tion, namely, of the technical or artistic merits of 
oratorical English, or of particular examj)les of oratory, 
which in the nature of things have to be drawn from 
the speeches either of politicians or of preachers. 
Now, pulpit oratory is for many reasons difficult of 
discussion on strictly artistic grounds, whereas the 
same difficulties do not arise in the case of the political 
platform ; and yet for obvious reasons the political 
journals cannot be looked to for any really impartial 
and disinterested criticism of platform work. Each 
side tends to make much of its own performers, and in 
general to make light of those on the other side ; and 
even when, as at the death of an eminent orator, the 
courtesies of strife prescribe generosity of acknowledg- 
ment all round, the political journal is not the place 
for a straightforward examination of the strictly literary 
merits of the deceased. The political point of view is 
not the literary, or the artistic, or the scientific. 

No suspicion of this, however, deters politicians and 
their journals from passing the most definite judg- 
ments, not only on a dead orator's merits as orator, 
but on the merits of his oratory in relation to general 
literature. Illustration lies to hand in the speeches 
and articles on the late John Bright, to whose memory 
be all honour. There being complete agreement, to 
start with, as to his consummate power as an orator, 
we have had many judgments to the effect that he 
was not only one of the greatest public speakers, or 



indeed the greatest, of his period, but one of the great 
names in English literature on that account. Some- 
thing like this was said long ago by Professor Thorold 
Rogers in his preface to his excellent collection of Mr. 
Bright's speeches. 

' Nothing,' said the Professor, ' which can be found in English 
literature will aid the aspirant after (sif) this great faculty [of 
public speaking] more than the careful and reiterated perusal of 
the speeches contained in this volume. . . . This is not the occa- 
sion on which to point out the causes which confer so great an 
artistic value on these compositions ; which give them now, and 
will give them hereafter, so high a place in English literature. . . . 
A century hence [English] will probably be the speech of nearly 
half the inhabitants of the globe. I think that no master of thai 
language will occupy a loftier position than Mr. Bright ; that no 
speaker will teach with greater exactness the noblest and rarest of 
the social arts, the art of clear and persuasive exposition.' 

The first leflection suggested by these remarks is, 
that Mr. Bright's literary influence for good is at least 
not well exemplified in his editor, seeing that ' aspirant 
after a faculty ' and ' reiterated perusal ' are not happy 
specimens of English : the next comment is that the 
' art of clear and persuasi\e exposition,' or of eloquence 
of any kind, can never be acquired from the study of 
any written eloquence whatever ; and the next, that 
Cobden had perhaps a greater gift of exposition than 
Bright, though he is never classed as a great orator. 
Professor Rogers makes the inveterate mistake of em- 
pirical criticism, in supposing that the surest way to do 
a thing well is to get by heart the way in which it has 
been successfully done by othei's. If he had but 
asked himself whether Bright acquired lih- powers by 
the ' careful and reiterated perusal ' of the speeches of 



ORATORS- ENGLISH 



59 



earlier orators, the sentences quoted would surely have 
been otherwise written. 

But a more distinguished authority than Professor 
Rogers has lately endorsed the judgment that Bright 
is a great influence in English literature. ' One of the 
chief guardians amongst us of tlie purity of the English 
tongue ' was one of the tributes ])aid by Mr. Gladstone 
to his old friend's memory in the House of Commons. 
Such a judgment would seem to imply, however mo- 
destlyj that all distinguished oratoi-s are in some degree 
' guardians of the purity of the English tongue.' And 
yet it was in this very speech that Mr. Gladstone, as 
reported by a (iladstonian journal of good standing, 
delivered himself of this passage : ' The supreme 
eulogy which is his due I apprehend to be this, that 
he elevated political life to a liiglier elevaiiun, to a higher 
zeiiilh, to a loftier standard.' (iui.s ciislodici ipxos cii.itudes ? 

The eulogy which is really John Bright's due as an 
orator I humbly apprehend to be this : that being a 
man of warm and deep feeling, strongly moved by cer- 
tain political questions of his time, and being happily 
unburdened with either conventional notions of oratory 
or academic habits of expression, he turned his gift of 
public speech to account with a directness and a force 
not previously common in even the best English oratory. 
This being so, his speeches are extremely effective even 
when read, not because he is a ' great master ' of Eng- 
lish prose in the sense in which Browne, and Hobbes, 
and Swift, and Burke, and De Quincey, and Landor, 
and Ruskin are so, but because in reading him we 
imagine the words to be spoken, and feel how powerful 
the utterance is in comparison with the ordinary run 
of speeches. It is really impossible that oratory proper 
should yield as high style-values as choicely wrought 
prose, and just as impossible that it should be in any 
practical sense a force guarding the ' purity of English.' 
What does the latter claim mean ? That Bright never 
used an unfit or awkward expression or construction .' 
or that he set his face against neologisms ? Either 
way it amounts to little. Bright was indeed incapable 
of such a series of unspeakable tautologies as that 
above cited from Mr. Gladstone ; he was saved from 
such performances by having only an ordinary stock 
of words at command, so that when he was at a loss 
for a word he could not ' fill up a pause ' with others, 
as Mr. Gladstone was long ago said to do, but he was 
no faultless master of platform elocution. And just as 
little was he, what many people so often declare him 
to be, a scrupulous cultivator of the ' Saxon ' element 
in his mother-tongue. If this is what Mr. Gladstone 
meant by his reference to ' purity,' he was wrong, as a 
study of tlie printed speeches will show. Bright would 
not have been the orator he was had he not instinc- 
tivelj' availed himself of the sonority and dignity which 
the Romance elements in English supply in so much 
fuller a degree than the Saxon. Take a sentence from 
his speeches at random, and it will be found that as a 
rule he uses at least an average proportion of Latin- 
derived terms. 



' Tlieie is nut a counlry in tile woilil that would not have been 
lianknipt long since, and plunged into irretrievable ruin, if the 
inilitiiiy anl/iorl/ies had been allmvcd to determine the amount of 
inllittiry force to be Icept up, and the amount of revenue to be 
devoted to that purpose.' --Speech on India, iv. (Author's pop. ed. 
P- 49)- 

■ Educate the people of India, goi'ern them wisely, and gradually 
the distinctions of caste will disappear, and they will look upon us 
rather as benefactors than as conquerors ' {India, i.). 

Nay, he at times added phrase to ))hrase for the 
sake of the effects of Latin terms only, as here : 
' There was never a more docile people, never a more 
tractable iialioii ' (ib.) ; and he could at thnes entirely 
lose force in the effort at sound, as in the sentence : 
' Let the government do that, and there is not a 
corner in India into which the intelligence would not 
penetrate with the rapidilij of lightning' [India, ii.). His 
sjjecial success lay in the effective alternation of terse- 
ness and simplicity with volume of diction ; btit when 
he perorated he was to the full as voluminous as the 
typical Parliamentary orator, with the advantage of 
being considerably more strenuous. In the main, he 
forced attention by nervous directness, as thus : 
' People may fancy that this does not matter much ; but 
I say it matters very much.' ' You must change all this 
if you mean to keep India.' ' There we ai'e, we do 
not know how to leave it, and therefore let us see if 
we know how to govern it.' But no man knew better 
how to follow up a sharp saying with a roll of vocables 
which should lend it moral impressiveness. 

' It is said that " the City " joins in this feeling. . . . Well, I 
never knew the City to be right. Men who are deep in great 
monetary transactions, and who are steeped to the lips sometimes in 
perilous speculations, are not able to take broad and dispassionate 
views of political questions of this nature ' {C^^ii/f/a, i. p. 67). 

And that he relied constantly and consciously on 
the sonority of Latinic terms for his most imposing 
effects might be shown by the citation of a score of 
his perorations. Take one of the most memorable : — 

' I am not, nor did I ever pretend to be, a statesman ; and that 
character is so tainted and equivocal in our day that I am not 
sure that a pure and honourable ambition would aspire to it. I 
have not enjoyed for thirty years, like these noble Lords, the 
honours and emoluments of office. I have not set my sails to 
every passing breeze. I am a plain and simple citizen, sent here 
by one of the foremost constituencies of the empire, representing 
feebly, perhaps, but honestly, I dare aser, the opinions of very 
many, and the true interests of all those who have sent ire here. 
Let it not be said that I am alone in my condemnation of this war, 
and of this incapable and guilty administration. And, even if I 
were alone, if mine were a solitary voice raised above the din of 
arms and the clamours of a venal press, I should have the consola- 
tion I have to-night — and which I trust will be mine to the last 
moment of my e.\istence — the priceless consolation that no word 
of mine has tended to promote the squandering of my country's 
treasure or the spilling of one single drop of my country's blood ' 
{Russia, ii. p. 246). 

It will not be disputed that this is eloquence of a 
high quality, combining passion and majesty of diction 
with a skill that never detracts from perfect spon- 
taneity of guise. But it is one thing to laurel the 
orator for his success in his proper walk, and another to 



60 



THE SCOTllSH ART REVIEW 



say that in vii-tue of his oratory he ranks with the great 
masters of written speech. The truth is, an orators 
mastery of language tends to be disproportionate!}' 
valued from the start on account simply of the incom- 
petence of the great mass of public speaking. It being 
much more difficult to speak fluently and grammatically 
at length, than to put together respectable prose in 
black on white, the utterances of most speakers, if 
faithfully reported, would represent a startling inepti- 
tude in comparison with the poorest of newspaper 
writing. Our political conditions, indeed, tend to 
yield us good speakers rather by accident than by 
natural or other selection of speaking faculty ; but 
even among professional speakers, such as barristers, 
sound locution is not at all to be depended on. Of 
the able Sir Henry James, for instance, it is said that 
he never by any chance speaks a sentence of more 
than three clauses in proper syntax. Nor is charm of 
articulation a common grace among politicians. There 
are some members of the House of Commons who, it 
is probable, are perfectly intelligible only to their own 
families, so faulty are their mere organs of speech ; 
and it is the exception and not the rule to find the 
commonest principles of elocution mastered by those 
who most need them. When, therefore, a man arises 
who articulates nobly and constructs lucidly and easily, 
he is already secure of critical esteem ; and when he 
employs his powers movingly to great public ends, he 
becomes, in Emerson's phrase, the true potentate, 
before whose fame all others must hush. But to 
the critical reader he remains a man who excels 
in public speaking, not a great master of language 
in the sense in which language is mastered by the 
great word-compellers of literature. That there 
should be any room for dispute on this head is due to 
our natural habit of imagining the reported speech 
actually spoken, and thus judging it on its platform 
merits. If we but make the effort of assuming a 
spoken passage to be part of a letter, or of a written 
argument, we discover that the style of public speech 
has, and necessarily, certain qualities of diff'useness 
which would be blemishes in written prose. Any fair 
example of Bright will furnish general or special proof 
As this : — 

' Suppose I stood at the foot of Vesuvius or Etna, and, seeing a 
hamlet or a homestead planted on its slope, I said to the dwellers 
in that Jiainlet or that homestcail. You see that vapour which ascends 
from the summit of the mountain. That vapour may become a 
dense, black smoke that will obscure the sky. Vou see that 
trickling of lava from the crevices or fissures in the side of the 
mountain. That trickling of lava may become a river of lire. 
You hear that muttering in the bowels of the mountain. That 
muttering may become a bellowing thunder, the voice of a \'iolenl 
convulsion that may shake half a continent. You know that at 
your feet is the grave of great cities for which there is no resurrec- 
tion, as history tells us that aristocracies and dynasties have passed 
away, and their name has been known no more for ever. If I say 
this to the dwellers upon the slopes of the mountain, and if there 
comes hereafter a catastrophe which makes the world shudder, am 
1 responsible for that catastrophe? I did not build the mountain, 
or till it with explosive materials. I merely warned the men that 
were in danger' (Reform, xi. p. 396). 



Or this, in allusion to the people of India : — 

' I would tell them also in that Proclamation, that while the 
people of England hold that their own, the Christian religion, is 
true, and the best for mankind, yet that it is consistent with that 
religion that they who profess it should hold inviolable the rights 
of conscience and the rights of religion in others. I would show, 
that whatever violent, over-zealous, and fanatical men may have 
said in this country, the Parliament of England, the Ministers of 
the Queen, and the Queen herself, are resolved that upon this 
point no kind of wrong should be done to the millions who profess 
the religions held to be true in India. I would do another thing,' 
etc. [India, ii. p. 31). 

It is certain that if these very effective passages had 
first appeared as newspaper letters, or as leading 
articles with ' we ' for ' I,' they would have stiaick us 
as at once inflated and slipshod, whereas in the 
oratorial form they have just the broad laxity of style 
that is needed for the platform perspective. The 
repetitions, as ' crevices or fissures,' and ' that hamlet 
or that homestead,' count for little in the sweep of 
the main metaphor, which has to carry the multitude 
on its wave ; and the diff'usion of a simple proposition 
through three or four iterative sentences is no fault 
where the proposition is politically weighty, and the 
audience includes all grades of i-eceptivity. But 
who could live in such prose for a permanency, along- 
side of the tested and tempered structures of the 
great stylists t 

If we can contrive to exclude for a moment the play 
of political sympathy or the general emotion of the 
arena, we shall find that the average spoken prose of 
even a great orator like Bright is pretty much the 
average prose of an average historian, only more diffuse. 
Bright's range and treatment of language are just the 
range and treatment of a good conventional writer like 
Lord Mahon or Dean Merivale : the syllabic and vocalic 
expedients are the same ; the vocabulary necessarily 
not more subtilised ; the doctrinal plane certainly not 
higher. But inasmuch as the writer frames and 
corrects his phrase and syntax at his leisure, while the 
orator must generally compose as he speaks, the latter 
of necessity commits himself to a number of crudities 
of expression and lapses of logic which the penman 
escapes. This is quite inevitable. The speeches of 
great orators which have ostensibly come down to us 
from ])ast generations do not furnish the proof, because 
these speeches were invariably recomposed for print- 
ing ; but the good verbatim reports of our present-day 
newspapers, and the merely corrected reprints of these, 
give the evidence in abundance. The point, indeed, 
is hardly worth illustrating, so certain is the fact. It 
is very obvious that Mr. Gladstone could not have 
written such a despei'ate string of tautologies as that 
above quoted from him ; and Sir Charles Russell would 
have worded differently the last sentence of his recent 
speech if he had had a minute's time to think. That 
speech appears to be accepted all round as masterly in 
its way ; but the close of the peroration consisted of 
a hope ' that there will be dispelled, and dispelled 
for ever, the cloud, ///<■ weighty cloud, that has rested 



I 



ORATORS' ENGLISH 



61 



on the history of a noble race, and dimmed. the glory 
of a mighty empire.' Sir Charles doubtless felt that 
• dark ' was unsuitable because the cadence required 
a word of two or more syllables ; but lie could not 
get the right dissyllable, and had to snatch at the 
wrong onCj to the disaster of his metaphor. Mr. John 
Morley, again, is confessedly a skilled literary artist, 
but he lately uttered a peroration which consisted of 
a repeated assertion of the progress of progress. A 
public speaker must just make up his mind to these 
tumbles, even if, like Lord Salisbury, he speaks slowly 
with long pauses, and so misses oratorical success. 
Many mishaps, indeed, may be escaped by a habit of 
learning one's peroration bj' heart ; but this has its 
disadvantages, and the shortcomings of the platform 
code of style are sometimes queerly exemplified even 
in the perorations of Bright, which are understood to 
have been carefully planned, if not actually got by 
heart. Here, for instance, is one in which the slight 
thought is confused and the expression iterative and 
verbose to the point of final nonsense : — 

' We know the cause of Ihis revolt, its fityposes and its aims. 
Those who made it have not left its in darkness respecting their 
intentions, hut 7i'/iat tliey are to accomplish is still hidden from our 
sight ; and I will abstain now, as I have always ahstained wilii 
regard to it, from pj-edicting lohat is to come. I know what I hope 
for — and what I shall rejoice in — but I know nothing of future 
facts that will enable me to express a confident opinion. Whether 
it will give freedotn to the race which white men have trampled in 
the dust, and whether the issue will purify a nation steeped in 
crimes committed against that race, is hwion only to the Supreme. 
In His hands are alike the breath of man and the life of States. 
I am tailling to commit to Him the issue of this dreaded contest ; 
but I implore of Him, and I beseech this House, that my country 
may lift not hand nor voice in aid of the most stupendous act of 
guilt that history lias recorded in the annals of mankind ' {Amenca, 
vi. p. 143). 

Of course the miscarriage of ' hiiturij has recorded in 
the annals of mankind ' is no worse than that of the 
progress of progress ; but whereas Mr. Morley cer- 
tainly could not have passed his blunder in proof, the 
chances are that Bright failed to detect his, since the 
general grammatical accin-acy of his printed speeches 
suggests that he would have removed any serious 
blemish if he saw it. And if he was capable of passing 
such a blot, it is clear he was not a thorough master of 
the English language. Nor was it a master of exposi- 
tion in the higher sense, however great might be his 
success in the simpler forms of statement, who uttered 
this :- 

• I admit that this is a great work ; I admit also that the further 
I go into the consideration of this question the more I feel that 
it is too large for me to grapple with, and that every step we take in 
it should be taken as if we were men walking in the dark. We 
have, however, certain great principles to guide us, and by their 
light ^ve may make some steps in advance, if not fast, at any rate 
sure. But we start from an unfortunate position. We start from 
i\. platform of conquest by force of arms extending over a hundred 
years^ {India, ii. p. 29). 

It would be difficult to find in prose literature .-i 



more unhappy confusion of metaphor, a more cumbrous 
evolution of image. 

But it would be flagrantly unfair to leave an impres- 
sion rather of the literary shortcomings than of the 
racy strength of Bright's oratorical style. At worst he 
was probably not more infelicitous than the most 
famous orators have at times been in speeches which 
we only know in their recomposed form ; certainly he 
has not made worse stumbles in diction than the 
academic Mr. Gladstone, or been guilty of such false 
taste as disfigures some of the speeches of the carefully 
jihrasing Beaconsfield. It is necessary to guard against 
a wrong estimate of the literary standing of oratory ; 
but, the proper qualifications made, it is our business 
to derive from the orator's printed performance all 
the pleasure it can rightly yield us. And we must be 
hypercritical or hlase indeed if we are hindered by a 
sense of the occasional default of literary form from 
enjoying such a piece of speaking as this : — • 

* The right honourable gentleman below me (Mr. liorsman) said 
a little against the Government and a little against the Bill, but 
had last night a field night for an attack upon so humble an 
individual as I am. The right honourable gentleman is the first 
of the new party who has expressed his great grief, who has retired 
into what might be called his political Cave of Adullam, and he 
has called about him every one that was in distress, and every one 
that was discontented. The right honourable gentleman has been 
anxious to foim a party in this House. There is scarcely any one 
on this side of the House who is able to address the House with 
effect, or to take much part in our debates, whom he has not tried 
to bring over to his party or cabal ; and at last the right honourable 
gentleman has succeeded in hooking the right honourable gentleman 
the member for Calne (Mr. Lowe). I know there was an opinion 
expressed many years ago by a member of the Treasury bench and 
of the Cabinet, that two men would make a party. When a party 
is formed of two men so amiable, so discreet, as the two right 
honourable gentlemen, we may hope to see for the first time in 
Parliament a party perfectly harmonious, and distinguished by 
mutual and unbroken trust. But there is one difficulty which it is 
impossible to remove. This party of two reminds me of the 
Scotch terrier, which was so covered with hair that you could not 
tell which was the head and which was the tail of it. 

' The right honourable member for Calne told us that he had 
some peculiar election experiences. There are men who make 
discord wherever they appear. The right honourable gentleman 
on going down to Kidderminster got into some unpleasing alterca- 
tion with somebody, and it ended with his having his head broken. 
But I am happy to say, and the House will bear witness, that with 
regard to its power, that head is probably as strong now as before 
he took his leave of Kidderminster and went to Calne — a village 
in the West of England. . , . When the right honourable member 
went down there he found a titmult even more aggravated than at 
Kidderminster. They did not break his head, but they did some- 
thing that in the eye of the law was even worse, for they shut up 
the police in the Town Hall, and the little mob of this little place 
had the whole game to themselves. The right honourable gentle- 
man told us of the polypus, which takes its colour from the rock 
on which it lives ; and he said that some honourable members take 
their colours from their constituencies. The constituency which 
the right honourable gentleman represents consists of 174 men, 
seven of whom are working men ; but the real constituent of the 
right honourable gentleman is a member of the other House of 
Parliament, and he could send us his butler or his groom, instead 
of the right honourable gentleman, to represent the borough. I 
think in one sense — regarding the right honourable gentleman as 
an intellectual gladiator in this House — we are much indebted to 



62 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



the Marc|uis of Lansdbwne that he did not do that' (Kfforiii, vi. 
P- 350). 

Somehow, we do not seem to have such sword-play 
nowadays. But the explanation, be it what it may, 



is not that the sword-play has become more delicate. 
Rather we must admit that an unmatched champion is 
gone. 

.loHN M. Robertson. 



MIDSUMMER NIGHT. 

THE yellow sunset faded out, 
There was no gold left in the sky, 
The waiting twilight from without 
Drew in, and closed so tranquilly. 

And all was silent in the breath 

Of June ; our careless wand'ring feet 

Trod the pale yellow flowers to death. 
By day they had not smelt so sweet. 

A little grace the day did lend 

To night, that was so pale and wan. 

We never knew when day did end. 
Nor when the night beffan. 

Night, like a leaguing army, lay 
Afar, beyond, without the pale. 

Only the twilight, faintly grey, 

Clothed all the hollows, like a veil. 

Or like a bat, with soft dusk wings, 
Hung o'er the misty fields, it seemed 

As if the little creeping things 

That hum by day slept not, but dreamed. 

The purple shadows glowed like light, 
The ringdoves cooed the leaves among. 

God, send us such another night. 

We pray Thee, ere our days be long. 

Violet Hunt. 



REVIEAVS AND NOTES. 



Children of To-tnonow ; A Komaiue. By WiLLI.VM Sharp. 
London : Chatto and Windus. 

Readers of Mr. Sharp's preface to his Romantic Ballads and 
Foeins of Phantasy — that manifesto, as to some, at the date of 
publication, it appeared to be, of a new Romantic School in 
literature — will look with interest in the present volume for a 
sequel to the principles there enunciated. They will not be dis- 
appointed. The revolt from the dominion of the Dwarves of 
Literature, or the 'Tertiary Scribes' as they are here called — the 
school of poets, that is, who would appear to have adopted as 
their device, not the questionable 'Art for Art's sake,' but the 
unquestionable 'Form for Form's sake' — distinguished Mr. 
Sharp's last volume of poetry : his aim in prose fiction would 
appear to be the application to modern life of what we may call 
the Romantic Principle. The result, as manifested in the book 
before us, is not only an interesting novel, but a book of no 
ordinary interest in the history of current literature. The opening 
situation — in whicli the sculptor-hero, Felix Dane, is discovered 
seated in the twilight of his workshop, his head buried in his 
hands, brooding above the fragments of his ' Hertha,' the labour 



of months, which he has with his own hands and of his own Iree 
will destroyed— is as fine and suggestive a one as any to be found 
in recent fiction. At the time when the story opens Felix has 
been for several years the resigned husband of an unsympathetic 
wife. But the hand of fate has prepared a change for him. By 
a series of striking yet perfectly natural coincidences, before four- 
and-lwenty hours have elapsed the path of his life has been three 
times traversed by Sanpriel — a beautiful and enthusiastic Jewess, 
the daughter of Adama Acosta, a musician in whose brain inspira- 
tion hovers on the verge of madness. The action of the story 
is further complicated by the guilty love of Gabriel Ford — a 
' realistic ' artist, whose hobby is the uncanny one of the study of 
poisons — for Lydia, Dane's wife. From these materials the author 
has constructed a powerful drama of passion and destiny — for the 
development of which, as well as for information regarding the 
sect called the Children of To-morrow, we beg to refer our readers 
to the book itself. We must not, however, omit mention of two 
charming lyric poems which enrich whilst they vary the text of 
the volume, nor of its natural description — of which the following 
fine passage may stand as an example : — 



REVIEWS AND NOTES 



63 



' It was wilh a sense of relief that he found himself at last in his 
bedroom, and alone. Through the open window came all manner 
of sweet fragrances from the garden-plots underneath, with con- 
fused but exquisite odours from the forest ; on the narrow lawns 
the blackbirds hopped to and fio, with piercing tlcite-like cries, 
and in the woodland a thrush sang its vesper song in such an 
ecstasy of abandonment tliat Felix almost imagined himself again 
in the garden of Dante's villa at Verona, where once he had heard 
a nightingale sing till it fluttered earthward, killed by the excess of 
its own passion. Below, and through all, came the deep, holiow 
boom of the sea, now rising, now falling, but ever insistent. To 
the enthralled listener there was something ominous in that relent- 
less, that for e^'er inquiescent undertone.' 

We cannot conclude without 
expressing — together with our 
warm applause of much that is 
contained in this volume — the 
hope that Mr. Sharp may in 
the future give his attention to 
a type of manhood simpler and 
more sterling than that here 
depicted — one possessed of 
greater self-control, less given 
to the over-glorification of pas- 
sion and of sensibility. Mean- 
time we await with increased 
interest his next eftbrt, be it in 
prose or verse. 

The competition for the exe- 
cution of a statue of Robert 
Burns at Ayr has been opened 
by the issue of invitations to 
Scottish sculptors. The statue 
is to be of bronze, and is to 
measure 9 feet 6 inches high, 
exckisive of the plinth. The 
sum offered is ;^750. We un- 
derstand that a protest has been 
made by almost all the sculptors 
who have been invited to send 
in models against the conditions 
of competition which have been 
fixed by the local committee. 
These conditions require the 
competing models to be 3 feet 2 
inches in height, a size consider- 
ably larger than is usual in such 
cases. They require also the 
completion of the statue within 
twelve months from the date 
of acceptance, a time which is 
considered to be much too short 

for the adequate execution of the work. Objection is also taken to 
the provision that the two designs which obtain the second and 
third places, and thus earn premiums of /50 and £2$ respectively, 
should become the property of the committee. The competitive 
models must be submitted by 31st August this year. It is difficult 
to account for this excessi\'e haste. If the good folks of Ayr have 
allowed Burns to languish without a statue for the century during 
which they have lived on his fame, they coald surely give six months 
for the conception of a model and a couple of years for the execu- 
tion of a statue. The sum offered is not liberal enough to enable a 
sculptor to lay aside all other work and devote himself even to a 
Burns for a year. It must be remembered that the actual cost of 
material for such a statue must exceed ;^5oo, thus leaving the not 
very munificent reward of a little over ;^200 for the sculptor. 

Mr. Dunc.\n M.^cara, Edinburgh, has published a reproduction 
of the picture by Mr. Henry J. Dobson, named ' A Scotch Sacra- 
ment.' The scene is laid in Abercorn Church, near Edinburgh, 
which is said to be the oldest parish kirk in Scotland. 




Two important chairs in the Arts Faculty of Glasgow University 
have become vacant — the Greek Chair, through the appointment 
of Professor Jebb to the Greek Chair at Cambridge, and the Chair 
of English Literature, through the resignation of Professor Nichol. 
The removal of these distinguished men is a distinct loss to the 
University. 

Tlir2 transactions of the First Congress for the advancement of 
Art and its application to Industry have just been publislied. The 
volume ha^ been edited by Professor R. A. M. Stevenson, of 
University College, Liverpool. The papers read at the Congress 
in December last are printed in full, with the exception of a few 
which appear in abstract. 

We illustrate the window in 
Ilyndland Church which has 
just been placed there by 
Messrs. J. and W. Guthrie. 
The effort made in Scotland by 
Messrs. Guthrie and others to 
localise the artistic industry of 
glass-staining deserves to be 
encouraged in every possible 
way. The window in question 
is extremely well designed, and 
worthily fills a place in Mr. 
Leiper's beautiful church. 

Mrs. Mona Caird's novel, 
T/id Wing of Az7-ae/, offers 
ii self as at once a work of art 
and a book with a purpose. 
One cannot do otherwise than 
admire the courage of a writer, 
and that writer a woman, who 
consciously sets herself to do 
what has perhaps never been 
done successfully by any one. 
The duality of intention, how- 
ever, renders it unavoidable 
to gauge the book by two 
standards. It may be judged 
on its merits as a piece of 
artistic work, or its purpose 
may be tried by the conven- 
tional, or any other ethical 
standard. Thus Mrs. Caird 
has from the outset a double 
chance of raising critical bile, 
and indeed in some cases she 
has already raised it. Some 
critics, judging the book by 
no standard of art, but simply 
from their personal ethical 
standpoint, as a book with a purpose, find that purpose bad, 
and say so freely. On the other hand, those to whom the 
' teaching ' of the book is a minor point, in which, as critics from 
the standpoint of art, they have no special interest, find certain 
inartistic flaws, and say so freely also. Mrs. Caird has thus to 
run the gauntlet of Bohemia and Philistia. If she escapes the 
Scylla of the one, she runs risk of being devoured by the Charyljdis 
of the other. In any case, like all brave souls who rebel against 
established conventions, she has a grim battle to fight all round. 
The good service that ^Irs. Caird has rendered in setting people 
to think cannot wholly be neutralised by the ridiculous miscon- 
ceptions regarding her views which are current. The most rigid 
conservator of the sacredness of marriage will find much to agree 
with in her criticism of property-marriage, as it is conveyed in 
the characterisation of Mrs. .Sedley, Viola, and Philip. 'I'he 
dialogue in T/ie Wingof Azrael is extremely brilliant; and though 
in one or two painful episodes the agony is unnecessarily pro- 
longed, the novel seems destined to hold a distinct place among 
contemporary writings. 



64 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



ROMANCE. 

BEYOND the sands that skirt the bay, 
Beyond the amethystine hills, 
Where nigh the lordly silver Tay, 
Fed by a thousand tribute rills. 
Rolls down his torrents to the sea. 

She dwells that 's all the world to me. 
Girt by a magic guard of limes, 
Of silver birch, and poplars tall, 
That gently shade her garden wall. 

The night we met 'twas dark and chill, 

A sombre mist hmig o'er the hill. 

Or truer was it that the mist 

These heath-clad ridges coldly kissed ? 

The landscape round was set in grey, 

A sullen sighing 'mong the trees 

Foretold the wak'ning of the breeze — 

Fit ending to the cloudcast day. 

But ah ! that was a golden time 

I spent beneath yon giant lime 

(And e'en to-day as I look back 

Through the dark haze of grief and pain 

That hangs o'er true devotion's track, 

I 'd fain live o'er it all again. 

For one brief moment of the hour 

That sped within yon linden bower). 

For I was happy ! What surprise ? 

'Twas then I walked with Viulel Ei/es, 

And J'iolet Ei/es shut out the storm, 

The wailing wind, the weeping rain. 

And bade the vale bloom bright again 

And evening's breath blow sweet and warm. 

Next morn the sun rose strong and bright, 

And crowned the hills with golden light, 

And at his coming all the earth 

Rejoiced as at an angel's birth. — 

But what reck / of sunny skies 

If not lit up by Fiolel Eyes, 

Who still must yearn for wintry weather 

If she and I may walk together .' — 

To me the morn was dark and di-ear. 

For Violet was no longer near. 

C. W. B. 




Edhtbursh : T. and A. Constable, Printers to Her Majesty. 




~1 - 



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The Scottish Art Review 



Edited bv JAMES MAYOR. 



Vol. II. 



AUGUST 1889. 



No. 15. 




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M^(<rouc(i2 reaiTu^ or (ia'l2r7 
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VOL. II. 



66 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



ARBITER ELEGANTIARUM. 



BY way of settling a still vexed question, somebody 
in a pleasing state of bewilderment between 
disease and remedy proposed lately to establish a sort 
of bureaucracy of the higher criticism — a Ministry of 
Good Taste. The chief of this hypothetical department 
was to decide in all matters from A, art, to Z, zoo- 
graphy, and from his verdict there was to be no 
appeal. Yet his veto was to be merely a superfluous 
opinion, backed by no threat of pains and penalties for 
non-compliance therein, and thus but another item 
in the present muddle was left untouched. The 
cat-o'-nine-tails as a corrective for crude colouring, or 
imprisonment with hard labour for faulty attempts 
in any of the arts, is not quite within the scope of 
present day practical politics. But what he was to 
attempt was a kind of paternal papacy on matters that 
pertain to the arts — to undertake the education and 
suppression of German bands and piano-organs, re- 
placing their ordinary programme by Chopin and cul- 
ture, Wagner and the ' World as Will ' — to enact 
sumptuary laws regulating crudities in crewels, and 
abuse of Aspinall's enamel — to limit the multiplication 
of milking-stools, to e.\tend the principles of stage 
censorship to theological novels and comic songs — to 
supply a gag to Mr. R. B., and tonics for his victims, 
— and so on, and so on. This idea not without some 
charm, whereby an improved edition of a mediaeval 
functionary (if chronicles lie not) was to be foisted 
upon a perplexed period, would be a not unmixed 
blessing in a time of Toynbeeism and ' high-toney ' 
guilds, while its aim to apotheosise humanity and 
make art supreme by Act of Parliament was at least as 
sensible as endeavouring to render virtue popular by 
similar means. 

Such a feeble effort of imagination, however, may 
fail to raise even a laugh, yet in very sober truth the 
judges of good taste are exercising their powers among 
us to-day, not by the voice of one constitutional 
minister, but by ten thousand usurpers. Autocracy 
may be guileless of such an aesthetic despot, but com- 
mercial democracy keeps a tame one in each of its 
warehouses. These functionaries, whose very existence 
is unguessed by the people generally, and unrecognised 
save by those on whom their yoke presses directly with 
galling fret, are the real propagandists of ugliness and 
vulgarity to-day. For such may hold sway over all the 
domestic arts, and command even the most important 
ventures thei'ein, keeping things to the dull level of 
their own ignorant mediocrity, that either reduces all 
the salient points, vibrant chords, and clear colours of 
any new manifestation of beauty to the inud-toned 
sordidness, or turns them to the blatant vulgarisms 
that offend us everywhere. So soon as those who 
teach have roused a new phase of recognition of 
the beautiful, the patient public are ready to ask for 



examples and to pay ; but the middleman interposes 
and intercepts the money on the one hand, while 
making the new idea, whatever it may be, as banal 
and contentedly vulgar as anything that preceded it. 
For example, does the taste for wrought iron revive 
by reason of a few designers raising a neglected craft 
to its rightful position, the buyers for the wholesale 
houses seize upon the material, worry the simplicity of 
well-wrought metal into pretty pettiness of over 
elaborated detail, dot it over with splashes of gold and 
copper, or even enamel in colom-s the whole work, and 
rob it of all vigour and real beauty. If simple white- 
painted furniture is found desirable after the dim 
tertiary colours of the early aesthetes, the shopkeeper 
produces a bastard thing, and floods the land with 
cheap and nasty little pieces of badly made cabinet- 
work, further vulgarised by hand-painted floral decora- 
tion. The adjectives art and hand-painicd are the sure 
mark of the beast, who is never so happy as when he 
can prefix these long-suffering syllables to the wares he 
vends. 

Nor is the extent of the power exei-cised by these 
arbiters of taste bounded by the bills of mortality : 
everywhere the influence of the underbred stripling 
who rises from errand-boy to shopman, shopman to 
buyer, makes his want of educated taste apparent in 
all the markets of the world. His besotted passion 
for trivial decoration has prostituted the goddess of 
Japanese Art, poisoned her with aniline dyes and 
bastard imitations of European designs. He it is who 
makes the metal-work of Benares become mere worth- 
less bric-a-brac, turns Cairene lattice-work to be a 
mere potential surface for daubing crude enamels ujion, 
takes the amphorae of old Greece and the vases of 
Etruria as vehicles to display what he calls Japanese 
designs, and vilifies Oriental rugs and Eastern fabrics 
by common and degraded imitations. While destroy- 
ing historic art he invents new horrors of his own, such 
as models of his sacred divinity the Eiffel Tower, 
tainbourines whereon are vilely painted landscapes, 
rush hats masquerading as wall-pockets, and a hundred 
hideous horrors that multiply with hydra-like fecundity, 
to bask in his smiles and win his approved grin of con- 
scious delight at the novel charms. 

This all-potent middleman is the ' sweater ' of art. 
Does an artist produce good wood-engraving.'' — he spoils 
them by cheap printing. To take an English edition 
of Loti's Madame Clirijsanlhemc, with its dainty drawings 
reproduced as common-placed crudities, is an easy 
example. If a designer creates a fit and beautiful 
pattern for surfaces, he insists upon incongruous 
elements being introduced to the despair of artist 
and art lovers. So that he gains the fool's laughter 
und sixpences, what cares he for the artist's sorrow. 
In music he floods the land with ten thousand copies 



PLAYBILLS 



67 



of a foolish song, and leaves good lyrics unheeded. 
To inquire for any good but little-known song at a 
musicseller's to-day, is to provoke a reply of withering 
contempt at one's foolishness in wanting what 'nobody 
keeps in stock.' In furniture he parodies every new 
departure, makes an overmantel as unseemly as the 
old atrocities in gilt frames it but lately replaced, 
and makes every new method mean and despicable. 

To any ignorant of his power it is sufficient to obtain 
an introduction to a wholesale house of business, and 
listen to the vendor's criticism upon his wares. In 
these days when every duke is in trade, any one can 
ask the one he knows best for a passport to his 
premises, and not all the odds ever laid against any 
event massed into one big stake will be too great to 
set against the chance of the man who buys from the 
makers and sells to the retail vendors being a power 
for evil beyond exaggeration. Not only is he a being 
ignorant of the rudiments of the taste which he pro- 
fesses to enforce, but actively and vigorously an 
hereditary champion for all that is mean and vicious 
in design and decoration. Here and there one trader 
of a hundred thousand has had the courage to accept 
from the artist the idea he evolved, and, having 
wrought it into shape, has let the public use its own 
discretion in purchasing. But with these scanty ex- 
ceptions the trail of the distributor is over all our 
wares, from oil-paintings to oil-cloth; his taste modifies, 
consciously or unconsciously, the production of the 
wares that must pass through his hands. Demanding 



highest profits for what satisfies his own taste, he 
naturally presses on the sale of this to the detriment 
of all others. Of course his infallible judgment is 
-supported by the logic of his ledger and the verdict 
of his balance-sheet. He insists that the public 
demand what — by exclusion of other things — he 
forces them to buy, and, having made his buyers 
obedient, surveys the result with an-ogant self-satis- 
faction. 

One buyer of a wholesale house can do more to per- 
petuate bad taste by practical distribution of bad 
examples than all the university-extensionists could 
do to withstay it, even though they resisted in a solid 
phalanx with complete agreement. If such a ponder- 
ous obstacle as we have here imagined would be 
powerless, who shall withstand what he — the buyer — 
approveth .-' This is hard to discover ; but, perhaps, 
if the public, instead of tamely submitting to his 
dictation, sought out the nature of the wares, and 
insisted upon good designs, simple, fit, and well 
wrought, being brought to bear upon the common 
things of everyday home-life — then, and only then, 
the buyer would yield, and, knowing keenly that his 
time had passed, would once more retire to the purely 
commercial position of a seller of his wares, ceasing to 
impress his own ideas upon the material in which he 
dealt, and fulfilling a not dishonourable function of a 
merely convenient machine for the economic distribu- 
tion of goods from the manufacturer to the public. 

Gleeson White. 



PLAYBILLS. 



IT was the custom of our early actors to announce 
their performances by sound of trumpet and, in 
the absence of any noise, from vehicles. This method, 
although primitive, proved effective enough. Such 
was the custom in force during Shakespeare's stay in 
London, although some little while before that period 
it had become common to affix printed bills to the 
door-posts of the theatres in addition to blowing the 
trumpet. This was probably the earliest form of play- 
bill, and the first record of it being so used dates back 
as far as 1553. In that ye.ar Strype, in his Life of 
Grindal, stating the objections of the Archbishop to 
dramatic amusements, mentions that he represented to 
the Queen's secretary that the players 'did then daily, 
but especially on the holidays, set up their bills, invit- 
ing to plays.' What these primitive playbills were 
like, or how they were worded, is a matter regarding 
which we have no information, not even a solitary 
specimen having been preserved to gladden the heart of 
some enthusiastic collector. Whether the names of the 
characters in the plays were printed with those of the 
actors who formed the cast cannot now be determined. 
The famous Shakespearian commentator, Malone, states 
distinctly that the names were not given ; and although 



his assertion seems to have been made pretty much at 
haphazard, he was probably correct in his conclusion. 
At what time the custom of printing the dramatis 
})ersona; and names of actors filling the parts was 
adopted there is no means of determining with any 
degree of precision. The earliest playbill known to be 
in existence distinctly gives both names of characters 
and actors. It is dated l663, and reads as follows : — 

By His Majesty's Company of Comedians, 

At the new theatre in Dnuy Lane. 

This day, being Tliursday April 8, 1663, will be acted, 

A Comedy, Called, 

The Humourous Lieutenant. 



The King, 


Mr. Wintersel. 


Demetrius, 


Mr. Hart. 


Seleucus, . 


Mr. Burt. 


Leontius, . 


Major Mohun. 


Lieutenant, 


Mr. Clun. 


Celia, 


Mrs. Marshall. 



The play will begin at Three o'clock exactly. 
Boxes 4s. ; Pitt 2s. 6d. ; Middle Gallery is. 6d. ; Upper Gallery is. 

It is printed on one side of a small quarto sheet of 
handmade paper, in plain but distinct type, and in all 



68 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



the essential requisites for a programme it is as 
complete and useful as any of the be-advertised and 
be-scented productions of the present daj'. 

Playbills of an earlj' date afford curious evidence of 
the conservative nature of the stage and all that per- 
tains thereto. The quarto sheet, printed only on one 
sidCj actually continued in use, without any innovation 
being thought of, for about one hundred and seventy 
years from the date of the oldest bill extant. Those 
who have seen a number of them bound together can 
well understand that it has always been the joy of a 
dramatic collector's heart to gather rare and curious 
specimens of these bills. The paper is always good, the 
printing as a rule exceedingly effective, and, although 
misspellings are not exactly scarce and curious mistakes 
may be noted in some, yet they form, when chronologi- 
cally arranged, the surest and most complete record 
of the period they cover. Genest, the great historian 
of the English stage, was fully alive to this fact, and 
made most extensive use of various collections to which 
he had access, including a magnificent set preserved 
in the British Museum. 

About the year 1830 the size of the theatre bills 
became larger, while the quality of the paper noticeably 
deteriorated. Another ten years witnessed still further 
steps in both of these directions, until the time at last 
arrived when huge ' double demy ' sheets, folded long- 
ways, and printed in coarse blue ink with type ranging 
in size from ' small pica ' to enormous wood-blocks, 
became the fashion. Some theatres varied the colour 
of the ink, bright green and red being common, and 
not a few bills were illustrated with extraordinary pro 
ductions in the shape of woodcuts. The absurdity of 
handing such enormous sheets of printed paper to 
ladies in evening dress was too apparent to allow of 
the practice being long continued, and so we find that 
as early as the ' sixties ' reforms were inaugurated in 
various London houses. The provinces were longer in 
adopting this change, as they had also been in follow- 
ing the original enlargement of the bills. 

An admirable characteristic of the old quarto bill 
was that it was always fully dated, while, on the other 
hand, its overgrown descendant and the present-day 
pages of advertisements, with particulars of the play 
sandwiched in between, are not. Scarcely anything 
can be imagined as being more annoying to either 
a collector or an historian than to find an important 
bill, perhaps of some original production, with no 
indication of the date save some such piece of informa- 
tion as the following: — 'For the first time on any 
stage, will be produced, this Saturday evening, the 
original comedy,' etc. ! Those responsible for concert 
bills are even greater sinners in this matter ; and the 
task of a musical historian who in the future wishes 
precise information as to dates is one not to be envied. 
The old quarto bills, however, are not without their 
faults. One is the practice, which prevailed until com- 



paratively recent times, of announcing the appearance 
of a new actor in some such fashion as the following : — 
' The part of So-and-so by a young gentleman, being 
his first appearance on any stage.' This has made it 
difficult in some cases to determine correctly the exact 
dates of actors making their first bow to an audience. 
Wlien Garrick first appeared in London at Goodman's 
Fields Theatre in 17-il, he was described in the bills 
after this manner, and tlu'ough that circumstance the 
writer, for a few pence, once was lucky enough to pick 
up the bill of one of the great actor's earliest appear- 
ances. Had Garrick's name been printed, or had the 
dealer been better versed in theatrical history, the 
price would likely have been a matter of pounds. On 
the particular bill in question may be noticed a curious 
custom of these early times. The performance is 
announced as ' a concert of musick,' after the first part 
of which, it goes on to say, ' will be performed gratis 
"The Life and Death of Richard in." by persons for 
their diversion.' Tlie meaning of tliis curious announce- 
ment, perhaps the earliest of the sort on record, was 
that Goodman's Fields Theatre not being licensed for 
theatrical performances, the manager was obliged to 
evade the law by some such subterfuge. Similar prac- 
tices became common all over the country on the bills 
of theatres not under the privileges of royal letters 
patent. Poor Allan Ramsay, whose theatre in 
Carrubbers Close, Edinburgh (the first in Scotland) 
was shut up by the passing of the 'new' Act (10 
Geo. II. cap. 28) in 1737, just six months after its 
opening, had evidently never thought of such an 
expedient for keeping out of the clutches of the law. 
The result of not announcing his plays as ' gratis ' was 
that both he and the poor players were jirosecuted for 
their illegal occupation, and, although the action 
against the poet seems to have been dropped, those 
against the actors were prosecuted with great perse- 
verance and apparent bitterness. The poor creatures 
were thus prevented from earning an honest living, and 
they gradually dispersed themselves over the land, 
picking up a bare subsistence as best they could. For 
a year or two theatricals were unknown in Auld 
Reekie, and then a manager with more resource took 
the matter in hand, and, by adopting the London plan 
of making a charge for a ' concert of music,' and 
announcing that between the parts of the concert a 
play would be acted gratis, he contrived to carry on a 
tolerably prosperous concern in the Taylors' Hall in 
the Cowgate. The new manager was Thomas Este, 
who commenced in 171-2, from which year until a royal 
patent was obtained for the theatre in 1767 the play- 
bills always contained the above announcement. After 
the granting of the royal patent the bills were headed, 
'By his Majesty's servants. Theatre Royal, Edinburgh,' 
thus assuming a dignity for the performance which it 
is questionable if results always warranted. 

J. C. DiBDIN. 



70 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



A SKETCH ON ENGLISH LANDSCAPE. 



AT times the opinions and remarks overheard at 
pictm-e galleries prove instructive, even to the 
art critic, whom the traditions of the grand style are 
supposed to hold in thrall ; for it is well to pay heed 
to the signs of the times. As a rule the opinions 
forthcoming do not show a great degree either of 
acumen or common-sense^ or go much beyond pedantic 
questionings as to whether the ' foreshortening ' of an 
arm, leg, or other item is correct, whether the hands 
and feet are not a trifle ' too large,' or the perspective 
of such and such an object far too steep, if not altogether 
wrong. Thus it goes on, for there is a pedantry in 
matters of painting as in literature and everything 
else. Yet occasionally the drift of the criticism is 
sound enough. 

Happening one day to be at the Grosvenor 
browsing among the ' old masters ' of the English 
School, I caught the following remarks in the vicinity 
of one of Louth erbourg's pictures, ' A Landscape witli 
a Rustic Bridge ' : ' H'm, so this is supposed to be a 
painting by a celebrated master.' ' Oh ! why, whose 
is it .'' ' demanded the friend, a prosperous-looking and 
well-dressed individual of the same type as his com- 
panion. ' Loutherbourg's,' replied the first; 'but 
somehow I don't like it, it may have been painted by 
some great swell, but it doesn't look a bit like a real 
landscape; it's so dark.' 'Yes, it is,' came phleg- 
matically from the unenthusiastic friend ; ' but I say, 
there 's a " Ward " up there ; now he 's a good man, if 
you like.' As these two comfortables moved off to 
solace themselves with a laboi-iously painted ' cow ' 
which the critical one was depreciating (I thoroughly 
agreed with him mentally) as being far too ropy and 
wrinkled, I turned once more to look at the ' Louther- 
bourg.' Despite the softness of its colour, and the 
mellow glow which united its large foliage masses into 
a rich harmony of light and shadow with the sky and 
foreground, it was both dark and artificial, and had 
much of the sombre, airless character which the Dutch 
masters once accustomed themselves, and other people 
too, to regard as the fitting interpretation of landscape 
nature. And the like conservation of gloom — of a 
universe of trees, woodland, hills, and pasture, darkened 
by clouds — not ' gracious things made up of tears and 
light,' but most solidly of pigment — for ever lowering 
over sad-coloured pastures, and water with neither 
tinkle, plash, nor radiance ; over woods of splendid 
oaks, splendidly painted, yet always brown and ever 
in decay, through whose leafage the sun never bursts, 
through whose glades the joyous spring notes of thrush 
and blackbird never pierce and thrill, — all this was 
perpetuated and rendered classic in English art by 
James Stark and the venerated ' Old Crome,' both of 
whom, however, it must be remembered, helped to 
deliver landscape art from the trammels of Italian 



convention and the classic manner (a manner which 
hampered the bright genius of Wilson), and, to set it 
on the more poetic highway of truth, which to-day 
gives us our Corots and Heffners, our Imjjressionists, 
Realists, and Naturalist painters. Thus, in the general 
evolution of things, landscape had its chance, especially 
in England ; and this all-round advance could be traced 
— not exhaustively, it is true, because, with one ex- 
ception, none of the great water-colourists were repre- 
sented — among the English paintings either at the 
Grosvenor or the Academy ' Old Masters.' One or 
two lovely Creswicks and Linnells, a David Cox, and 
about seventy water-colour sketches by Turner, at 
the latter exhibition, as well as a fine transcript in 
'oil' (' Quillebceuf ') of a sunlit town in a mist of 
cloud and spray, and swept by a stormy sea, all show 
the more modern aspect of the change. These, taken 
with the earlier masters at the Grosvenor, where the 
collection included a great number of Constable's 
sketches, cover the field of landscape for about the 
past hundred years. 

The evolution towards a truer and more natural 
method in landscape was initiated by the two great 
original painters, Gainsborough and Constable : what 
their power stopped short at was grasped and set on 
canvas, fifty years later, by the spontaneous genius and 
marvellous generalising capacity of Turner. Beside 
these three great names (the last greater than any) a 
crowd of lesser ones indicate the line of progress as 
well as the mark of foreign contact in English land- 
scape. 

To appreciate Gainsborough and Constable as ex- 
ponents of landscape, it is perhaps necessary to bear 
in mind the art conditions of the time. It was the 
golden age of portraiture — of Romney, Reynolds, and 
Gainsborough. The grace and beauty of refined life, 
the indescribable charm of eighteenth century culture, 
the best and purest side of society, were immortalised 
by their brushes, the darkest aspect being grimly set 
forth with no uncertain touch by Hogarth. The lower 
stratum, in all innocence and contentment, is shown 
us in the pastoral and rustic scenes of Morland, whose 
men and women, if idle, are at least always natural 
and happy, and generally in felicitous agreement with 
their simple surroundings. In landscape pure, Wilson 
reigned supreme, for the taste inclined towards Claude 
and the school of ' compositions ' — surely without 
analogue in all nature. But although this bias went 
some way to conventionalise Wilson, his real power, 
his sense of beauty in line, mass, and colour, as well as 
his susceptibility to atmospheric values — all original 
and artistic qualities — gave him, natm'ally enough, the 
name of our ' English Claude.' But beside Wilson, 
who was Gainsborough's senior by fourteen yeai's and 
Constable's by as much as sixty-three years, there was no 



A SKETCH ON ENGLISH LANDSCAPE 



71 



native influence in landscape whatever. Two great 
streams, divergent enough in character, set from the 
shores of Italy and Holland. The subsequent assimi- 
lation of what was finest in both resulted in the 
unique product of the English landscape cult. But in 
those days, over a hundred j^ears ago, before the 
assimilating process had been effected — and when more 
scope for individual and original effort seemed possible 
— apart from the classic influence, there seemed no 
example for men to look to save Dutch precision and 
its unimaginative interpretation of nature. For those 
old Dutchmen painted their out-of-door effects with as 
much quaint conscientiousness as if they were painting 
a piece of ' still life.' For them (even for Hobbema, 
whose landscapes are full of a luminous quality as of 
thin transparent air, against which his straggling 
poplars recede in well-defined and orderly avenues) 
landscape beauty lay in noting all the mimdice of foliage 
and herbage as carefully as the bricks in the courtyard, 
or the tiles in the house roof The clouds in the sky, 
and the stretches of water, were rendered as laboriously 
as the crinkles in a cabbage, or the shining interior of 
some kitchen pot; with as much enthusiasm, but no 
more, did they paint the one as the other. Neither 
the mists that came rolling over their dyked lands, the 
gleam of water, nor the full shimmering sunshine, 
evoked in their phlegmatic souls any spontaneous re- 
sponse to the poetry, changefulness, brilliance, vivacity, 
elemental factors in sea and sky, in pasture and 
woodland, that lay on every side about them. 

Hogarth, who, in every sense of the word, was the 
founder of English art, was no landscapist. There was 
at the winter exhibition of the Grosvenor a land- 
scape ascribed to him giving a ' View of Spencer 
House,' and St. James's Park, with Westminster Abbey 
in the distance, and stiff and formal it is : straight 
fences ; prim trees planted in rows that would be a 
credit to any box of toys ; a hard, neatly painted sky ; 
houses drawn with a care emulative of Canaletto,- the 
walks and edges of an oblong pond evenly drawn, and 
not a leaf out of place, while tiny figures of ladies and 
gentlemen decorously advance up and down the severe 
landscape. Everything, from a polite point of view, as 
it should be, no doubt, but extremely irksome to the 
artistic sense for all that. 

Thus, when Gainsborough came, painting in those 
low, rich, lovely tones and tints, perfect as revelations 
of abstract colour ; with a technique cai-eless in many 
ways, yet wholly his own ; spontaneous, free, graceful, 
and refined ; with as much natural aptitude for painting 
landscape as for limning fine ladies, a new window 
seemed suddenly opened into nature. For his land- 
scape, to the full as poetical as Wilson's, unlike his was 
free and unconventional, fettered neither by the rules 
of classic precedent nor by the formalism of the Dutch 
school. The same originality of mind which led him 
to paint his celebrated ' Blue Boy ' as a protest against 
the 'petty maxims' of Sir Joshua Reynolds also 



inclined him towards naturalism when painting out of 
doors. 

Side by side with the natural and poetic develop- 
ment of Gainsborough, Constable's vigorous personality 
found plenty of scope in striving to seize the evanescent, 
aerial effects of storm and breadth of sunshine, in 
bringing air, light, and natural — not conventionalised 
— relief into his work. He struck, most vigorously, 
the ?iO«-poetical keynote of realism in landscape, as 
Gainsborough had sovmded that of a dreamy and 
sympathetic naturalism. More poetic than Constable, 
with a finer range of colour, expressed with greater 
subtlety and rarer artistic feeling, he was perhaps less 
virile in some respects than his vigorous contemporary, 
that master whose freedom of brush and realistic bent 
gave an impulse to art in France, no less than on our 
own side of the Channel. Some of those slight 
' Sketches,' to which reference was made earlier in this 
paper, owe much of their charm to a delicacy and 
freshness of colour, a directness of touch and simplicity 
of refined effect, suggestive of the modern Impres- 
sionist treatment, qualities which Constable's finished 
' oils,' with their laboured handling and heavy colour, 
very often lack. 

Perhaps two landscapes by ' Old Crome,' and one by 
Turner, at the Grosvenor, showed more particularly 
the contrast in method, and the advance made alike in 
aerial perspective and in a truer and more artistic 
recognition of natural phenomena. ' Gibraltar Water- 
ing- Place, Back River, Norwich,' and a ' View on the 
Yare,' are both from Crome's brush ; ' Pope's Villa,' 
on the Thames, from Turner's. Of the two Cromes 
the first is particularly dark, and the wide expanse of 
water which lies under a cloudy sky is quite devoid of 
any light or vivacity, as the clouds and the sky are 
without luminous quality. In the second it seems 
surprising that the old mill-house is illumined so 
powerfully by a blaze of sunlight, while the river 
embankment in front of the mill, and in the same 
place, is buried in shadow, as also seems the river 
stretching away to the front of the picture : the trees, 
too, that back the mill are overshadowed in the 
same way, although in the natural order of things they 
would catch the sun somewhere ; nor does the river, 
peaceful enough to take reflections, reflect back any 
semblance of that brilliant tint on the side of the house 
standing so close to its marge. From such an inter- 
pretation that of Turner's seems different indeed. 
Here also the oblique rays of an afternoon sun cumu- 
late on the white house standing among trees ; lumin- 
ous shadows lengthen and sweep from house and distant 
trees. The serenity of a summer evening is as truly 
expressed by the golden sky, aerial and far receding 
in its mj'stei-y of molten cloud, as by the still river 
tracing its sinuous curve between wooded levels and 
banks, made golden by the radiance of evening light. 

Mary Reed. 



72 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 




A COLONY OF ARTISTS. 




HERE seems nothing in 
the nature of things which 
should lead artists to con- 
gregate together in larger 
or smaller groups, for in 
all the arts, save painting 
and sculpture, those who 
follow them seem to love 
solitude, or at least dwell- 
ing apart. It is the neces- 
sity for studio room, and 
for nearness to certain 
artistic centres, which has 
created colonies and sub- 
colonies of painters, to 
which only those come who 
are in sympathy with the 
majority, and from which 
those speedily depart whose metliods and aims are 
antipathetic to those of their fellows. Yet this ten- 
dency is an aid in viewing men in relation to each 
other, and the varied principles under which they work. 
Thus it seems fitting and natural that St. John's Wood 
should diflFerfrom Haverstock Hill, and Haverstock Hill 
from Chelsea in the same way, though certainly in a 
different degree, as the Italian from the Munich School, 
and that again from the French. It is of Chelsea, 
or rather of a very small portion of it, that this article 
will treat ; and if it is confined simply to Manresa Road, 
it is solely from the fact that without a strict limit 
and stern resolution one might be led on and on even 
as far afield as Fulham or Hammersmitli. For of the 
habitations of artists in West London there is no end. 

Manresa Road was, until quite recently, a no- 
thoroughfare, running north out of King's Road, until 
it was barred by a high paling, which has just been 



removed. To the north of it there is the well-known 
group of Brompton Hospitals, and on the opposite side 
of King's Road, Glebe Place, which leads to Cheyne 
Row, where Carlyle lived, and further still to the 
embankment of the river, which ebbs and flows before 
Rossetti's house, a little to the east. 

There never was anything very picturesque about 
Manresa Road, and since it has been opened for traffic 
by the destruction of the high paling, the extinction of 
a morass, and the remo\-al of a number of stone carts 
which were usually there, it is even less so than it was ; 
yet, as the beauty of the place lies not in its picturesque 
qualities, but in its old associations with Cecil Lawson, 
Holman Hunt, Verney Phillip, and others, it needs no 
apology for the choice, even though little be spoken 
of those who are now dead and famous, or living in the 
light of public esteem, and though the greater portion 
of what is to be said should relate rather to those who 
are still comparatively unknown. 

To some extent Chelsea has always been a revolu- 
tionary centre in art ; for, not being hampered by the 
deadening influence of effete men and methods, it was, 
and still is, extra-academic and free. It was here that 
the New English Art Club was set on foot in 1885 by 
such men as La Thangue, Christie, Charles, and 
Stanhope Forbes, who, without being confined to this 
particular spot, wei-e all essentially Chelsea men in 
their ties and intimacies. The movement of which 
they were representatives and forefighters came from 
the knowledge that their work was out of sympathy 
with the aims of those who held the power, if not 
the right, of judgment, and since then the Club has 
been, and may, it is hoped, continue to be, a rallying- 
point for rebellion against the mannerisms of those 
older men whose art was no longer vital, and has 
degenerated into formulas and mannerisms. Tlie 



A COLONY OF ARTISTS 



73 



revolt was not only against the living but the dead, 
for of none more truly than of artists can it be said, 
' The evil that men do lives after them.' Putting aside 
dry traditions, the younger went back to Nature not 
as mere copyists but as seekers for a guide. 

Holman Hunt occupied for a while the studio Mr. 
Alfred Hartley now works in, and Cecil Lawson was 
for a long time in that which is also identified with the 
names of La Thangue and J. J. Shannon. On the 
same side of the road is a range of sheds, and a studio 
where Verney Phillip worked, and where his pupil, 
Thomas Stirling Lee, is now. These buildings are 
doomed to destruction, and cannot long survive, 
being destined to give place to something in the shape 
of an Institute. 

One cannot help remembering the Pre-Raphaelites 
when in the neighbourhood of Rossetti and Holman 
Hunt, but that school is now practically dead, though 
not without having done much good and necessary 
work. The aims of the Pre-Raphaelite School have 
been expounded both in contemporary and in subse- 
quent record, but of a newer school, which has received 
the name of the Square Brush School, little is publicly 
known. This recent development in English art owes 
its rise in England to H. H. La Thangue. Mr. La 
Thangue, who no longer lives in London, had an in- 
calculable effect upon all with whom he came in con- 
tact by the earnestness of his personality, and his love 
of truth and directness. When he returned in the 
earlier part of this decade from Paris, whither he had 
been with Christie, the Scotch painter, and Stirling 
Lee, the sculptor, he made his influence widely felt. 
Those who knew his work and methods can yet trace 
their results among many who would deny being either 
his conscious or unconscious pupils, while others who 
never even saw him are touched by his power at second 
or third hand. 

Few outsiders have even a notion of what square 
brush-work means. Li brief, it is a technical method 
which puts paint on canvas in a particular way with 
a square brush, which many of the older men never 
use. Those who practise it in its simplest form leave 
the brush-marks, and do not smooth away the evidence 
of method, thus sometimes insisting on the way the 
picture is painted, perhaps at the sacrifice of subtleties 
in the subject. For there can be two qualities in 
painting, that of brush-work and that of colour, the 
last being partially accidental, while the first is 
essentially planned. Both cannot exist at once, and 
many workers in this school are deficient in the finer 
colour coming by that patient experiment which 
is perpetual search. Yet there are infinite variations 
in this method (which seems to have been first 
employed by Franz Hals, and was common in its 
extreme form at Paris when La Thangue was there), 
as may be seen by the work of Frank Bramley, Milton 
Fisher, Chevalier Taylor, and Stanhope Forbes, who 
now belong to the Newlyn School, as those who employ 
the later development of this technique are called. 

VOL. II. 




There certainly is a charm in clever brush-work, even 
though a man take infinite pains to hide that he 
took any at all ; yet artists mostly work through and 
beyond it, and as the movement has served its 
turn in the revolt, not only against slovenly brush- 
work, but against the cramped method which taught 
that nothing was drawn which could not be examined 
with a glass, there is no longer reason to insist on 
manner rather than on matter. 

Li Manresa Road there are no men who are entirely 
free from traces of the Square Brush School at all 
times, unless it be Mr. Jacomb Hood, who works in any 
fashion that suggests itself to him, and, being a clever 
and facile draughtsman, with a wide range of artistic 
sympathies, is the least mannered of any in this 
colony. Besides painting, he occasionally turns his 
hand to etching, and sometimes models in wax or 
clay. 

Certainly among those who owe much to La Thangue 
must be reckoned J. J. Shannon, the young portrait- 
painter, who is rapidly rising to the foremost rank. 
It is not commonly known that Mr. Shannon is an 
American, having been born at Albany, in New York 
State. He came to England at the age of sixteen, 
and the promise he displayed then has not since been 
belied by his career, in which he owes as much to 
hard work as to native talent. Of late his work 
has been free from anything like obtrusive technique, 
but his present quiet method has been arrived at 
through the clever and evidently dexterous brush-work 
which he learnt originally from La Thangue. Those 



74 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 




who noticed his portraits last year must have been 
struck with that of Mr. Vine, the Master of the Epping 
Hoimds, with its quiet dignity of pose and subdued 
strength, which was at the Grosvenor, while that of 
Mrs. Williamson, at the New Gallery, showed the artist 
at his best. His work exhibited this spring included 
portraits of Mrs. Sedgwick, Lady Granby, and Miss 
Jean Graham, which are all widely different in char- 
acter, but masterly in quality and treatment. Since 
Mr. Shannon left Manresa Road, which he did in 
1888, there has been no painter there who has con- 
fined himself so exclusively to portraiture, and some 
who are acquainted with him regret that he should 
have done so. 

Another artist influenced both by La Thangue and 
by the French School, from which the latter imported 
the square brush method, whose work both in landscape 
and poitraiture is always extremely dexterous in tech- 
nique, is Mr. W. Llewellyn. Some have said that it is 
at times ' smart,' which, strange to say, is a term of 
reproach in the studios, implying that a picture 
may be too clever by half If so, this is mostly due 
to a sturdy and praiseworthy resolve, which many 
other artists might imitate, to be a master of tech- 
nique first of all, trusting that the rest would come 
after. 

Few men who have lived amongst artists have failed 
to discover their strange limitations in appreciation. 
These limitations are due, not so much to jealousy, as 
to concentrated thoiiglit in their own work, beyond the 
bounds of which they do not care to go. Some years 



since, an artist who has been mentioned in this article 
went with the friend who shared his studio to see a 
marble group next door, and while viewing it he was 
enthusiastic in a quite uncommon way with him. On 
returning to his own work he was silent for a long time, 
but at last remarked, almost soUo voce, to the amuse- 
ment of the other, ' Well, I suppose there is something 
in sculpture after all.' 

Indeed, perhaps there is, though one might hardly 
suppose it in some exhibitions. Is it not the highest — 
if there be any ranking and subordination in the great 
hierarchy of the arts ? It is the most spiritual in its 
possibilities, and being thus the last to be appreciated, 
stands first in the end. Marble, indeed, differs from 
want of positive colour, but it is thus fitter for suggest- 
ing abstract thought. In the hands of the master how 
strangely the concrete becomes symbolic, the essence 
visible, the creed tangible ; and yet there are few, 
whether painters or not, who feel its greatness, and 
even those who work in it are divided. For there are 
doctrines of sculpture — orthodox and unorthodox, as in 
the churches. 

There are sculptors and sculptors in England, but 
few for whom their material becomes plastic before a 
great thought. It is possible to pass through a modern 
exhibition, and be unmoved by a single evidence of the 
feeling which shows that study and long labour have 
not been lost in the attainment of mechanical dexterity 
and power of construction, which are as nothing with- 
out spiritual insight and emotion. Yet there are men 
in the countr}' who have this vision, and one of them 
is Stirling Lee of Manresa Road. 




A COLONY OF ARTISTS 



75 



.^'li^^^HtisXftKS^Ki::*^-,-,^.-^^ 




It certainly cannot be said that Mr. Lee is un- 
known ; but that he is appreciated in any full measure 
none who knows his work believes. The treat- 
ment he received from the authorities at Liverpool, 
who chose his designs for the adornment of St. 
George's Hall, and, when two of the reliefs were put 
in place, refused tlie remainder, was assuredly neither 
wise nor far-sighted. No one who is acquainted with 
the facts denies that their action was within their 
rights and the strict letter of the contract ; but that 
the designs approved by a representative body of one 
year should be rejected by that of the next, without 
any calm appeal to the opinions of those best qualified 
to judge the spirit and aim of the work, seems scarcely 
defensible even by the most prejudiced in so great and 
liberal-minded a city. 

The reliefs which have been the subject of so much 
heart-burning are figured in the plate given with this 
number, and can speak for themselves. The com- 
pleted series was to have illustrated Justice, its educa- 
tion, administration, and results. The first panel 
represents Justice, a child of the poor, led by Right 
Understanding, on the way lighted by \^'isdom, while 
Joy strews her path with flowers ; and in the second, 
having reached her girlhood, she refuses in her purity 
(of which her nudity is the symbol) to be drawn from 
the path in which her young steps were set either by 
the laurels of Fame or the crown of Earthly Riches. 
In the third, which, with the others following, is still 
in clay, she has attained her womanhood, and now 
upholds the heavy cares of the world by her moral 
strength, supported by Right as she receives the divinely 



blossoming rod of hidden knowledge; and having come 
into her dominion in the fourth, which illustrates her 
ride, she holds the scales before the mirror of Truth, 
while Mercy stands at her sword hand. Mark that 
Justice is not blind ; she knows, and can see. In the fifth 
panel are the earthly results of her power and dominion, 
for she meets Concord and Peace ; and in the last of 
the series she is kissed by Righteousness and crowned 
by Glory, while the sword, which has become super- 
fluous in immortalit}', falls from her right hand at last. 

This is a noble series of noble thoughts which one 
might have imagined would have united the applaud- 
ing suffrages of all men ; and it makes us despair of 
art in this country, when the prejudice which exists 
against the employment of the nude figure, even in so 
pure a way, should have cut short the execution of a 
work which, judging from what Mr. Lee has given us 
in the marble, would have been unique in power and 
in feeling. Fortunately it is not too late yet, and 
surely those who liave had influence sufficient in Liver- 
pool to break what in natural equity was an approved 
and binding contract, should reflect and pause before 
they render the completion of perhaps the simplest 
and noblest piece of decorative work in England im- 
possible by the lapse of time or the failure of the 
workman. For most assuredly this thing has not the 
approval of any conceivable justice ; and seeing that 
six other panels, illustrating National Prosperity and 
its causes, must fall with these, it is hard to speak of 
the matter calmly. 

Mr. Lee's marbles have ever an inexpressible charm 
of their own, and vibrate with life. As a rule, the 




*'t.b.(je-«|lyN 



76 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



artist works direct from the model on his material, 
and the result is seen in the increased truth apparent 
in every line. His technical dexterity is admirable, 
and, on this last point, hardly to be surpassed ; but it 



He served his apprenticeship as an engineer with 
his father, and then set up for himself in Birming- 
ham ; but finding his artistic desires too strong to 
repress, he came to London, and combined earning a 







is in the spirit of the worker, his keen sensibility to 
emotion, his power of vision, his feeling for Right as 
the true consolation, and his fervent, human and re- 
ligious sympathies, evident in so much of his work, 
that his great charm lies. It is sometimes said that 
all he does is too literary, too much like painting, too 
delicate, and this is often true ; yet, after all, it re- 
mains that he is intensely original, and this his co- 
workers often fail to see. 

Sculpture may be called the great synthetic art, 
and at the other end of the scale may be placed line 
etching as the deepest analytic process which repre- 
sents natural form. Etching is the king of pure 
suggestion ; and, to phrase it so, the artist is great by 
what he does not do, by his reducing his subject in 
arithmetical language to its lowest terms, and omit- 
ting all but the essential elements. Manresa Road 
would be an incomplete colony without an etcher, 
and the one it does possess begins now to be looked 
upon as second to none but Mr. Whistler. Frank 
Short, who is essentially a metal-worker, the very 
type of a strong mediaeval artist with faith in him, 
came from the Black Country, where his immediate 
ancestors built furnaces and were engineers, and even 
there he took naturally to copper, printing his first 
plates in a neighbour's wringing or mangling machine. 



living as an engineer assistant to the Thames Sewage 
Pollution Board with studying at the schools in Ken- 
sington. There his progress was rapid, and since 
being chosen to reproduce some of the plates for Mr. 
Ruskin's edition of the Liber Studiomm, his rise has 
been unchecked, although he combines working with 
the bath as an etcher with the burr in mezzotint, 
while his yearly water-colour work shows that his 
natural eye for colour has not been dimmed by the 
process of reproduction in black and white. Two of 
Mr. Short's more recent aquatints, which have not 
been yet exhibited, can only increase his reputation ; 
and one especially, a study of the near and far banks 
of a strongly-rushing stream, should attract attention 
for its directness and simplicity, and intense yet 
subtle pathos ; while his latest mezzotint of Mr. G. 
F. Watts's ' Orpheus and Eurydice ' is the best thing 
he has yet accomplished. 

Mr. A. D. M'Cormick, who has drawn the sketches 
for this article, and is well known as an illustrator, has 
but lately taken to etching, and bids fair to do good 
work. His finished charcoal studies, which few men 
do, show a great grasp of the Human Art in which 
Millet excelled above all men. It is not given to 
every one to see the pathetic side of life and labour, 
and all existence in the world of air and light and 



A COLONY OF ARTISTS 



77 



shadow, even when divorced from the things that 
walk upon its surface for a day ; and if it be said that 
of all who live in this colony Mr. M'Cormick, Mr. 
Short, and Mr. Alfred Hartley, whose chosen work is 
landscape and whose favourite subject seems to be 
sheep, have this sight in the fullest measure, it is no 
derogation from the powers and qualities of their 
friends, neighbours, and co-workers. 

Mr. Lee is essentially a worker in marble, as is Mr. 
Thomas, whose public statues are well known, while 
Mr. Albert Toft is more characteristic in clay and 
marvellously quick in execution. Yet his marble bust 
of Mr. Gladstone finds many admirers. In the next 
studio is Mr. Trood, the animal-painter, recently 
returned from Morocco ; and further still. Major Giles, 
the soldier artist, while next to him resides Mr. Frank 
Brangwyn, the youngest artist in the road, whose 
natural facility is as marvellous as his minute and 
retentive memory for the tones and minor details of 
nature. He works out of doors for eight months of 
the year. It will be a matter of surprise to those who 
know his pictures if he never attains the power which 
he so abundantly promises. 

Besides these, there are artists here such as Mr. 
Nelson Dawson, who is well known for his vei-y dex- 
terous water-colour work ; Mr. Markham Skipworth, 
who has made a reputation by his portraits and studies 
of women ; Mr. Strettin, the animal-painter ; and Mr. 
Hoist, the Danish sea-painter, who occupies the studio 
held in succession by La Thangue, Cecil Lawson, and 
J. J. Shannon. We dare not be tempted on to Glebe 
Place, to speak in detail of Mr. J. E. Christie, whose 



quality of colour is so greatly admired by artists ; and 
Mr. Drury, the other rising young sculptor, and even 




further still, into harsh criticism, instead of sure a))- 
preciation. Morlev Roberts. 




78 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



PARIS CAUSERIE. 



Paris, y>(/y 18S9. 

MESSRS. CLAUDE MONET and RODIN have 
made a bold venture in opening an exhibition 
of their works in Petit's Gallery at a moment when 
the numerous artistic attractions of the Exhibition 
throw all other exhibits in the shade. Nevertheless, 
artists and amateurs will derive both pleasure and 
instruction by devoting a few hours to the study of 
the works of the two artists, for they may be con- 
sidered as typical representatives of the aesthetical 
tendencies of a group of artists who in the face of 
great difficulties have gradually come to the front 
rank. I have already alluded to M. Monet in this 
Review a propos of a small collection of paintings he 
exhibited last March at Valadon's Rooms. This time 
M. Monet exhibits no less than 145 landscapes, marines, 
views of the streets of Paris, and studies, — in a word, a 
complete resume of the labour of twenty-five years ot 
the artist's life. It is necessary to proceed to a certain 
selection in so numerous and varied a collection, but 
taken as a whole it is most interesting, for it initiates 
us into the different phases of a struggle against dif- 
ficulties, discouragement, and the narrow-minded 
prejudices of the public. M. Monet, in company of 
Coui-bet, Manet, Bastien-Lepage, Besnard, Degas, 
RafFaelli, belongs to the Impressionist school — the 
bugbear of the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Untrammelled 
by the traditions and teaching of academical art, the 
Impressionists see Nature and her surroundings as they 
present themselves as we see them with the naked 
eye in the full light of day, not in the artificial atmo- 
sphere of the studios. In sunshine and storm, under 
dark clouds, or under the broad expanse of blue sky, 
they have noted their impressions of the ever-varying 
phantasies of light, shade, and colour ; they have done 
what lay in their power, to the best of their technical 
ability and natural talent, to realise these fugitive 
visions. Failure sometimes attends their most sincere 
efforts, but even in this they are more interesting than 
their brother-artists who are content to follow the 
beaten track. M. Monet's studio is in the open — 
whether the sky be fair or dark, in rain and snow, he 
works indefatigably ; sometimes in the rich pasture- 
lands of Normandy, on the wild sea-coast of Brittany, 
or in some quiet nook of the Riviera in view of the 
blue waters of the Mediterranean ; but wherever it be, 
always in the open air, in full daylight, with Nature 
for sole guide, model, and teacher. 

M. Rodin, the sculptor, whose 36 exhibits figure 
in the same room as M. Monet's pictures, resembles 
the Impressionist painter in his fervid worship of 
Nature. The one great object of his life has been 
the attempt to endow his marble or bronze figures 
with the expression, the ' movement,' of living beings, 
and not the mere elegant, pretty attitudes of modern 



sculpture, feeble imitations of the antique, full of 
technical conventionalities. For instance, his life-size 
plaster cast of Bastien-Lepage is not only an excel- 
lent likeness, but gives us a glimpse of what sort of a 
the artist was in the neglige of his everyday appear- 
ance, dressed in a blouse, mud-covered boots and 
trousers, as he appeared after a morning spent in the 
fields painting in the open. The bust of Victor Hugo 
is another splendid specimen of realistic sculpture ; 
while the ' Torso of Ugolin ' is a morceau celebrated in 
all Parisian ateliers as a mastei-piece of technical ability. 
In contrast to these, the two busts entitled respec- 
tively ' Bellona ' and ' St. George ' are exquisite speci- 
mens of refined beauty of features allied to a noble, 
defiant expression of countenance. 

M. Rodin, like M. Monet, remained for many 
years unappreciated, unknown to the public. For 
a long time he earned his living as a mere jiralicien ; 
a Belgian sculptor employed him for several years 
at the ornamental sculptiu'e of the King's Palace 
and the new Bourse in Brussels. He returned 
to Paris, and in 1877 sent to the Salon 'L'Age 
d'Airain,' the figure of a man standing in an attitude of 
pain and sorrow, which is now to be seen at the bottom 
of the staircase of the Decennial gallery at the Grand 
Exhibition. Certain parts of the body were so admir- 
ably executed that Rodin was accused of having 
modelled them from a living model ; it was with 
difficulty that M. Dubois and other friends of Rodin's 
were able to convince the wiseacres of the Direction 
of Fine Arts of their error, and of the thorough artistic 
honesty of the sculptor. This incident, and the 
discussions it gave rise to, turned to Rodin's advan- 
tage. A group of admirers, critics, and patrons 
formed round the artist who assisted and encouraged 
him. The ' St. John Preaching,' and other celebiated 
works, brought him profit and renown, and Rodin now 
occupies the place he is entitled to in the front rank 
of modern French sculptors. 

His most remarkable exhibit at Petit's Gallery is a 
large, life-size group in plaster, entitled ' Les Bourgeois 
de Calais,' which is to be cast in bronze and placed on 
the Place de la Poste at Calais. Before accepting the 
order for this group, Rodin specified that he should be 
allowed to execute it according to his own Idea and 
inspiration. Then he set to work, and the result is as 
novel as it is striking. The group consists of six life- 
size full figures, which represent the burghers as they 
came forth from the Calais town-hall on their way to 
the English camp. In their shirts, bare-footed, bare- 
headed, a rope round their neck, in their hands the 
keys of the city and the citadel. The centre figure is 
old Eustache de St. Pierre, who first gave the noble 
example of self-sacrifice to his fellow-citizens. This 
figure, in attitude and expression, fully realises the 



AMERICAN ART NOTES 



79 



artist's wish to personify heroic patriotism. Leaning 
his hand on his neighbour's shoulder stands Jean 
d'Aire, evidently in need of encouragement. Jacques 
de Bissant hides his face in his hands, while his brother 
Pierre turns his head aside so as not to see the tearful 
faces of his wife and children. Two other burghers 
(whose names Froissart has forgotten to mention) also 
express by their attitude the cruel situation they are 
in. The general effect of the group is thoroughly 
human, natural. Here are six men who are heroically 
determined to sacrifice their lives in order to save 
their native city from destruction, yet we see that, 
however great their moral coui-age, they are influenced 
physically by the feelings common to all men when 
suddenly brought face to face with the prospect of a 
violent end. The artist has carefully avoided all 
exaggeration of gesture or theatrical expression of 
countenance. The six burghers go forth simply, nobly, 
like men who feel that they are doing their duty and 
no more. There is a philosophical lesson in this group 
which we may all of us turn to account. 

Rodin also exhibits a number of small marble, 
bronze, and plaster figures of women, fauns, and 
witches, which are the detached fragments of his great 
work, the dream of his life, such as all artists conceive. 



and, alas ! so seldom realise. This, in Rodin's case, is 
the project of a large allegorical composition, 'The 
Gate of Hell.' But to form an idea of his project it is 
necessary to see the work as it stands unfinished in his 
atelier. A broad portico, six metres in height ; above 
it three nude male figures stand, tired and sorrowful ; 
they lean on one another for support, while their arms 
and hands point downward at the fatal words, ' Lascialc 
ogni i'peraiiza.' Up and down the panels of the gate 
is an endless procession of nude figures in full relief, 
which personify the craving of blind desire, the lassi- 
tude of pleasure, the sorrow and suffering which attend 
the pursuit of human wishes. It is a strange piece of 
work, full of imagination and life, which appears to 
have been inspired, not so much by the noble vision of 
Dante, but rather by the following lines in Baudelaire's 
Femmes damnees : — 

'Descendez, descendez, lamentables victimes, 
Descendez le chemin de I'enfer eternel ! 
Plongez au plus profond du gouffre, oil tous les crimes, 
Flagelles par un vent qui ne vient pas du ciel, 

Bouillonnent pele-mele avec un bruit d'orage. 
Ombres folles, courez au but de vos desirs ; 
Jamais vous ne pourrez assouvir votre rage, 
Et votre cliatiment naitra de vos plaisirs.' 

C. Nicholson. 



AMERICAN ART NOTES. 



With one exception, all the exliibitions in New York are now 
closed, and until the fall there will be little doing in art sales. It 
has not been too profitable a winter. Presidential years are pro- 
verbially bad. On the general excitement of the national election 
and inauguration of the chief executive, pictures seem to be 
neglected, and while there have been sold important productions 
by foreigners at auction, native artists have suffered. 

The Annual Prizes this spring have excited but little interest. 
The Prize Fund Exhibition at the American Art Galleries has been 
scantily attended, and the sales have been less than ever before. 
It opened during the week of the celebration of the centennial of 
the inauguration of George Washington, and notwithstanding the 
great crowds that thronged the city, but few people found their 
way into the rooms, and fewer bought. Only one prize of two 
thousand dollars was offered, while in other years there have been 
several. There were not more than four pictures that suggested 
prizes : Carleton Wiggins's ' Fine Bull,' well drawn and strong in 
painting, J. A. Walker's tender and poetical ' Evening Landscape 
with Cows,' George Brush's ' Indians killing a Moose,' remarkable 
for its wonderful detail and strict accuracy, and Henry Poor's 
commonplace and very academic 'Night of the Nativity,' with 
the shepherds and their flocks. The money was awarded to the 
last named, and the picture will remain permanently in Buffalo, 
whither, after its close in New York, the exhibition goes in July 
to remain a fortnight. 

The Academy closed its doors the last of May. The prizes at 
this institution are awarded by a vote of the exhibitors. Mr. 
Irving Wiles received the Thos. B. Clarke prize of $300, for the 
best figure composition by an American under thirty-five years 
of age. His ' Harmony ' — two young women in evening dress, 
at the piano and violin — was well entitled to the distinction it 
received, and was a delightful piece of work. Mr. Sewall with 
his 'Sea Urchins' — nude boys on the Holland coast — received the 
first Hallgarten prize, while Mr. Benson with his classical study 



of 'Orpheus,' and Mr. Kenyon Cox with his idealisation of 
' November,' received the second and third prizes respectively. 
The elections for Academicians and Associates resulted in the 
selection of Mr. St. Gaudens (a tardy recognition of the most 
talented art worker in this country) and Mr. Hamilton to 
the former rank, and of Mr. Irwin, Mr. Weldon, and Mr. Wiles 
to the latter. The latter young man is known to English readers 
of the Centuiy Magazine by his very charming illustrations, 
and has long attracted great attention by very clever water-colours 
here. His oil work is able and thoroughly artistic, and the 
Academy has done itself credit in adding him to their number. 

The Society of American Artists, composed of the younger men, 
and presided over by William M. Chase, opened on the 3d of 
May at the Galleries in Fifth Avenue. The date was unfor- 
tunately late, and the sales have been almost ml. It was a 
pity, for a more creditable collection of native pictures has not 
been shown in New York. The president was largely represented, 
his principal canvas being a life-sized portrait of Elsie Leslie, the 
child actress, whose Little Lord Fauntleroyhas been the talk of the 
town this winter. The child stands against a blue plush curtain 
beside a chair. No better portrait has been done here for years. 
Abbot Thayer had two portraits, one a group of two children, 
wonderful in its effect of atmosphere and flesh, and Mr. Benson of 
Boston sent a portrait of his wife, dainty and delicate to a degree. 
In landscapes Mr. Dearth had a quiet ' Moonrise ' that attracted 
much attention, and was subsequently bought for the collection of 
Thos. B. Clarke, but the Seward Webb Prize of S300 was awarded 
to Mr. Tryon, more, it is presumed, on his record than on his con- 
tribution this year, which did him but scant justice. Other 
landscapes by J. Francis Murphy, Geo. Bogert, Homer Martin, 
and two large portraits by John Sargent, went to make up a 
thoroughly artistic e.xhibition. 

The Dodge prize of $300 for women was awarded to Mrs. 
Ella C. Lamb, whose decorative panel at the Academy attracted 
considerable attention. 



80 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



On the occasion of the celebration of the centennial of the 
inauguration of George Washington there were erected several 
arches in New York. All, with a single exception, were not only 
inartistic, but positively hideous. For the most part they were 
left to fourth-rate German decorators, with results more easily 
imagined than described. The exception referred to was one at 
the beginning of Fifth Avenue, at Washington Square. It is an 
older portion of the city, where the architecture has much individual- 
ity, and where the houses are occupied by the old Knickerbocker 
families. There the residents subscribed a fund, and JVIr. Stamford 
White, one of the most artistic of our architects, designed a worthy 
structure, simple and severe, in wood. Painted white to imitate 
marble, and with some relation to the surrounding buildings, Mr. 
White evolved a decorative arch worthy of more lasting material. 
What with the delicate beauty of the work and the excessive, not 
to say obtrusive, ugliness of all the other arches. New York for 
once awoke to a realisation and an appreciation of the artistic. 
The committee in charge of the centennial got itself together and 
resolved that it would be a good thing and wise to perpetuate this 
monument. And the committee, having many moneyed men 
among its members, headed a large subscription list. Some fifty 
thousand dollars have already been subscribed, and the estimated 
cost is one hundred odd thousand dollars. 

A propos of the centennial, St. Gaudens, the sculptor, has 
designed a very beautiful medal commemorative thereof. It is the 
first really good piece of numismatic work this country has enjoyed, 
but it was, I fear, but little appreciated by the general public. 

Circulars are out for the Eighth Autumn Exhibition of the 
National Academy. Lists of work must be sent in by or before 
the 24th of next October, and the exhibition opens on the iSth of 
November, and continues until the 14th of December. 



The Inter-State Industrial Exposition of Chicago will open on 
the 4th of September and close on the 19th of October, and Mr. 
Potter Palmer of that city has offered two prizes of five hundred 
dollars each for the best landscape or marine and the best figure 
composition by American artists. The secretary of the committee. 
Miss Hallowell, who for some years has acted in this capacity with 
much satisfaction to all the artists, has gone to Paris, where she 
will select from the American contributions to the Salon a number 
of the more important works, and the exhibition will probably 
have its usual success. 

The Minneapolis Industrial Exposition will open also early in 
September. 

Artists and picture buyers have formed a new league for the 
abolition of all tariff on works of art. Henry D. Marquand, the 
well-known connoisseur, is the president, and Kenyon Cox the 
secretary. Energetic and concerted action will be taken during 
the coming season to put the matter before Congress in proper 
shape, with a view of proper legislative action to secure the 
desired results. The question is not new, nor has the cause lacked 
the earnest protest of all the painters against the odious law, but 
heretofore Congress has not cared to handle the subject. It is to 
be hoped the present movement will be more successful, for the 
classification of art products with tobacco and wines and diy 
goods reflects but little credit on the country. 

Great interest is manifested here in the Secretan sale in Paris. 
It is rumoured that a carte blanche has been given to the Knoedlers 
to purchase the famous ' Angelus ' of Millet, and that it is positively 
to become the property of a New Yorker, many times a millionaire, 
to whom price is of no importance. 

Arthur Barnet. 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS.— I. 

PINKIE HOUSE.— II. 



LEAVING the Dining-room we ascend the staircase, 
which is a modern part of the house, though the 
fine metal-work, of hammered iron enriched witli balls 
and bosses of brass, is a reproduction of the original 
balustrades. Here is hung an imposing gallery full- 
length of Sir John Hope, the eleventh baronet, painted, 
standing beside his charger, in the uniform of the 
Midlothian Yeomanry. It is the work of John Syme, 
R.S.A., a favourite pupil of Sir Henry Raeburn, who, 
after the death of that painter, completed many of his 
unfinished portraits. The present picture was com- 
missioned of Raeburn during his lifetime ; he had 
painted in the horse when his death occuri-ed ; and 
the work was then taken up by his pupil upon a 
fresh canvas. It shows, like all Syme's productions of 
this period, the clearest signs of the influence of his 
master, whose style he somewhat weakly imitates, its 
execution being altogether wanting in the individual 
force, the firm and definite, if rather hard, handling 
which characterises those works of Syme in which he 
is most himself, .such as the ' Dr. John Barclay' in the 
National Gallery of Scotland. The present picture has 
been engraved in mezzotint by Thomas Hodgetts, in a 
plate of which there are two states, the later embod}'- 
ing certain changes in the uniform which had taken 
place since the portrait was executed. Here, too, hangs 



a portrait of Sir John's wife, Anne, fourth daughter of 
Sir John Wedderburn, Bart., of Ballindean, by Syme, 
painted as a companion full-length, but now judiciously 
reduced in size. 

On the staircase also hang a series of medallion 
portraits in oil of the Ceesars, executed in a rough and 
ready, but quite telling and effective, fashion ; works 
of the school of Rubens, and similar in general charac- 
ter to the classical heads bearing the name of the 
great Flemish painter which are well known through 
the contemporary engravings of Bolswert and Pontius. 
The top of the staircase is decorated with two of the 
original ' Stirling Heads,' carved in oak, that were 
formerly part of the decoration of the King's Room in 
the palace of Stirling Castle, erected by James v. about 
1529, and demolished in 1777. Thirty-eight of these 
heads, of which several are believed to be portraits of 
the monarch and of persons of distinction at the time, 
were engraved in Lacunar Strivelinense, a volume 
published by Blackwood in 1817, with letterpress under- 
stood to be from the pen of John Gibson Lockhart. 

We now pass into the Library, where we find some 
excellent wood-carving, dating from the seventeenth 
or the beginning of the eighteenth century. Here, 
too, there hangs an interesting picture, acquired by 
the present baronet in Spain in 1862. It is inscribed 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIR CONTENTS 



i\ 



witli a conjoined F and P, enclosed within an oval, the 
monogram of Francisco Pacheco (b. 1.571, d. l654), the 
scholarly painter of Seville, who was master and father- 
in-law of Velasquez, and is known also as a poet, and 
by his Treatise on Painting, published in 164:9, which 
is still valued for the information it contains regarding 
Spanish artists. The present oblong canvas shows half- 
length figures of three saints clad in Dominican habits, 



hands his proper attributes of the pyx, containing the 
Host, and the image of the Virgin and Child, in 
memory of his rescue of these sacred objects, which 
he snatched from the altar when his convent at Kiov 
in Russia was attacked and sacked by the Tartars, and 
then, being pursued by the pagans, flung himself into 
the rain-swollen waters of the Dniester, which miracu- 
lously sustained him, so that he walked across the 




^ 



! '' 


^ 

1 


/ 


1 \ 


1 


/ 



' IFvf ■ 




W 



and is carried out with all the exactitude characteristic 
of a painter who was appointed a Familiar of the Inqui- 
sition — 'Inquisitor of Art' — in l6l8, and who devoted 
pages of his erudite treatise to ' a code of rules for re- 
presenting in an orthodox manner sacred scenes and 
personages.' The saint who stands in the centre, with 
his fine attenuated face raised and looking upwards, is 
evidently St. Hyacinth, the evangelist of Northern 
Europe, who is said to have extended his mission from 
the shores of Scotland to China. 'He bears in his 
vor,. II. 



river as on dry land. The female saint to our left, 
laying one hand on her heart, and bearing in the other 
a stem of blossoming lilies, is no less evidently St. 
Catherine of Siena ; but we have not yet been able to 
identify to our satisfaction the male saint on the right, 
who bears a book and holds aloft a golden key from 
which a second, of iron, depends, and who, like the 
others, is clad in Dominican robes of black over white. 
Opening fiom the Library is the Drawing-room, and 
this apartment also is richly decorated with wood- 

I. 



82 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



carving, which is interesting in its way, though it is 
modern, executed by the carpenter on the Pinkie 
estate. Over the fireplace, let into the panelling, is 
the portrait of the founder of the family, Su- Thomas 
Hope, Lord Advocate, the first Baronet (see Plate). 
This ' first stock-father ' of the race was great-grandson 
of that John Hope who came to Scotland in attendance 
on Magdalene, Queen of our James v. He passed 
advocate in l605; and in the following year he 
became notable for his learned and spirited defence 
of the Presbyterian ministers charged with treason by 
the Crown for having attended a General Assembly 
which had been convened at Aberdeen without royal 
authority. ' Mr. Thomas Hope had never pleaded 
before the justice-clerk before,' says Calderwood, 'yitt 
nothing was wanting in him in that actioun that 
was to be found in the most expert lawyer. His 
pleading that day procured him great estimatioun and 
manie clients.' In I626 he was appointed colleague 
to Lord Advocate Sir William Oliphant, then old and 
infirm, on whose death, in l628, he succeeded to the 
undivided honours. He figured prominently in the 
struggle initiated by Charles i. for the recoveiy of the 
Church lands in Scotland and for the establishment of 
Episcopacy in that kingdom. In his diary he records 
in most laconic fashion the Jenny Geddes episode in 
St. Giles' : ' This day the Service book begoud to be 
read in the Kirks of Edinburgh, and was interruptid 
be the woman ' — indeed, 'twas whispered, the King's 
Advocate was himself privy to the uproar, and had 
recommended to cei-tain ' matrons ' of his acquaintance 
that 'they and their adherents should give the first 
affront to the book,' though he never finally cast in his 
lot with the Presbyterians, and, while maintaining that 
the Covenant of l638 was not illegal, he never signed 
it. He prosecuted for the Crown in the famous trial of 
Lord Balmerinp — a trial so momentous in its bearing 
upon the fate of Charles himself. But he was spared 
the sight of the fall and death of his royal master : he 
died, 1st October l646, while the Scots army was 
negotiating with the English Parliament for the sur- 
render of the person of Charles, leaving behind him a 
solid reputation as the most profound Scottish lawyer 
of his time, and as one who contrived — and, in his day, 
to do so required both courage and dexterity — to be 
substantially true alike to his king and his country. 
The present baronet is descended froni the eldest son 
of Sir Thomas Hope, and is, accordingly, head of the 
house of that name, of which the Earl of Hojietoun, 
being descended from the great lawyer's sixth son, 
represents a cadet branch. 

The portrait, painted by Jamesone in l638, and 
therefore one of his later works, shows the seated 
figure, turned in three-quarters to the right. He 
appears in the prime of life — indeed as a somewhat 
younger-looking man than we should have expected to 
find him at the time, when we remember that thirty- 
two years previously he had already become celebrated 
by his defence of the Presbyterian clergymen. His 



beard, moustache, and eyebrows are dark, the eyes 
dark and bluish, the face freshly coloured, and the 
nose large and prominent. He wears a black cap 
edged with white lace, and a black gown ; the chair is 
covered with red, and a red-covered table appears to 
our right ; his right hand rests on the arm of the chair, 
and his left holds a small red book. 

In Sir Thomas Hope's Diary, a Ms. still preserved at 
Pinkie, and printed by the Bannatyne Club, in which, 
among very dry business details, we occasionally catch 
some human glimpses of the kindly, devout, supersti- 
tious nature of the man, there are two refei-ences to 
his portrait by Jamesone. Under date of ' 20 July 
163s, Friday,' he notes, 'This day William Jamesoun, 
painter (at the ernest desyr of my sone, Mr Alex- 
andei*,) was sufferit to draw my pictur' — mistaking 
the Christian name of the artist, confusing him with his 
brother, ' Williame Jamesone, writtar in Edinburghe ' ; 
and under the following Friday he enters, ' Item, a 
second draucht be William Jamesoun.' 

The portrait exists in various versions. A good one 
is in the possession of Thomas Bruce, Esq., of Arnot 
Tower; others are that in the Parliament House, 
Edinburgh, and that formerly in the possession of Loi-d 
Justice-Clerk Hope ; a bust-sized version, engraved 
in Pinkerton's Scottish Gallery, is at Hopetoun; and 
another, formerly at Rankeillour, is now at Luffness. 

To our left of the portrait of Sir Thomas Hope hangs 
another admirable family picture, which, indeed, may 
rank as the most accomplished piece of art that 
Pinkie contains. This is a bust portrait of Hugh Hope 
(b. 1782, d. 1822), of the East India Company's Service, 
second son of the ninth Baronet, by his second wife. 
It is the work of Raeburn, and a masterly example of 
that painter, showing — in every touch that expresses 
the fair hair, the blue eyes, the full, fresh-coloured 
face, and in the details of the crisp white ruffles, the 
dark brown coat, the yellow vest — that easy power of 
swift, unlaboured, expressive brush-work, for which Sir 
Henry is unrivalled among Scottish painters. 

Another family portrait in this room deserves its 
word of mention, a small bust likeness attributed to 
David Martin, placed over a door. It shows the 
dark, keen, richly coloured face of Captain Archibald 
Hope, eldest son of the ninth Baronet, and half-brother 
of the Hugh Hope mentioned above. He died, a 
prisoner of Hyder Ali's, at Seringapatam, in 1782. 
According to family tradition, he was the very officer 
who was chained to Sir David — then Captain — Baird, 
and whose fate called forth Mrs. Baird's pitying ex- 
clamation, as she remembered her son's restless and 
impatient temperament, ' God help the lad that 's 
chained to our Davie !' 

On the opposite wall hangs a large and important 
Spanish picture, acquired, like the one in the Library, 
by Sir John Hope in 1 862. It shows the Madonna, with 
the Child on her knee, surrounded by circles of cherubs 
and angels ; and the chief portion of the work is 
believed to be from the brush of Juan del Castillo, the 



I 











PORTRAIT OF SIR THOMAS HOPE. Bv GEORGE JAMESONE. IN THE DRAWING-ROOM AT PINKIE HOUSE. 
From Original Drawing by T. Crawford Hamilton, R.S.W. 



Scottish Art RevietV. 



THE MANSIONS OF SCOTLAND AND THEIK CONTENTS 



83 



master of Murillo and of Alonzo Cano, while the larger 
foreground cherubs at the foot are attributed to 
Pacheco. 

We now pass to the Painted Gallery of Pinkie 
House (Illustration, p. 81), which forms one of the 
most characteristic, individual, and interesting of its 
features, — an apartment 85 feet in length, 19 in 
breadth, and about 13| feet in height, lighted from the 
east side by a row of five windows, and from the south 
end by that noble oriel which also lights the Dining- 
room below. The Gallery serves the purpose of a kind 
of museum or general aesthetic lumber-room. On our 
right, along its entire length, is ranged a series of 
quaint old cabinets and chests. Eastern and Scottish, 
several of them displaying interesting collections of 
Oriental china; and above them is hung a row of old 
family porti-aits, and portrait engravings, interspersed 
with casts of the large and excellently decorative medal- 
lions known as the ' Stirling Heads,' to which we have 
already referred ; while on the other side, between the 
windows, are bookcases filled with venei'able old tomes. 
Occupying the centre of the room is a succession of 
small tables, one displaying examples of shells and 
coral, another serving as a kind of armoury, being 
covered with foils and rapiers and fowling-pieces of 
variously quaint and antique fashion ; axid the oriel 
end of the Gallery is occupied by a billiard-table. 

Turning to the ceiling, which is the most notable 
feature of the Gallery, we find that it is composed of 
jilanks of wood, each about a foot in breadth, running 
the lengthways of the apartment, the cove sloping 
upwards with a gentle rounded curve till it joins the 
flat surface of the roof. The wood has been covered 
with a thick white priming, which in many places has 
been left untouched, and tells as a white pigment in 
the decorative colour-scheme, in which black is 
also effectively introduced, the other pigments most 
prominently employed being a light, variously gradated 
blue, a light warm yellow, green, brown, and touches 
of red. In the final sentence of his interesting and 
valuable ' Notice of the Ceiling ' (Proceedings of the 
Sociely of Antiquaries of Scotland, vol. x. N. s.), Mr. 
Seton is in error in stating that the roof is ' without 
any trace of gilding,' for gold has been employed to 
a considerable extent both in the lettering of the 
mottoes and in the high-lights of the scroll-work. The 
sides of the Gallery were originally decorated in colour 
in the same manner as the ceiling, but this enrichment 
was destroyed when the east windows, originally dor- 
mers, were altered and enlarged during the last century. 
In a manner and taste characteristic of the period, 
a pseudo-architectural feeling has been preserved 
throughout the painted decorations of the ceiling, the 
aim of the artist having been to suggest that the roof, 
as it curves upwards, is an extension of the walls of 
the apartment, pierced on each of its sides with a long 
row of Gothic windows ; though, curiously enough, 
within each of these windows — which are depicted as 
open to the blue sky — the painted representation of a 



picture has been introduced, enclosed in a frame of 
black and gold, and duly suspended by a painted ring 
to a painted brass-headed nail ! 

The centre of the ceiling is occupied with the 
painted representation of a great octagonal dome, seen 
in perspective, as it would appear to a spectator stand- 
ing on the pavement beneath and looking upwards. 
This dome is composed of three tiers or galleries, 
supported on columns, and open to the blue sky; and 
on the parapet of the lowest of these galleries is perched 
a company of half-naked, rosy, and green-winged 
cherubs or angels, designed with a considerable feeling 
for grace of contour and attitude. Most of them are 
busied with harps and other musical instruments ; but 
one, daringly foreshortened, faces us bending, and 
taking aim with a golden cross-bow. In the centre 
of the dome are blazoned, in full heraldic colours, and 
with their due supporters, the arms of that chief builder 
of the mansion, the first Earl of Dunfermline ; and eight 
other coats, for Winton, Hamilton, and various allied 
houses, are introduced in the broad band which sur- 
rounds the compartment — a border white in its ground, 
and gracefully decorated with conventional scroll-work 
in colour, which might afford some excellent suggestions 
to our modern designers for needlework. The arras 
of the ceiling have been e.Kpounded with the skill of a 
thoroughly accomplished herald by Mr. Seton in the 
paper to which we have already referred. Each of the 
four corners of this central compartment is occupied 
by a symbolical picture within a richly decorative oval 
border, this border being of a Renaissance character, 
like the greater part of the rest of the ceiling ; and be- 
tween these are Latin mottoes within oblong panels. 

At the extreme ends of the Gallery are two similar 
painted representations of the interiors of domes, but 
smaller in size and without the cherubic figures. 

The twelve figure-subjects which appear in their 
painted frames within the representations of pointed 
windows are rendered in a rough but distinctly telling 
manner. In their contrasts and combinations of bright 
definite colouring they are thoroughly decorative in 
effect, and the figures and faces possess a good deal of 
homely truth and character. The countenance of 
the embrowned negro potentate, in the first compart- 
ment to our left as we enter the end of the Gallery, 
may be mentioned as a vivid bit of characterisation 
attained by very simple means. In this subject it is 
noticeable that the background is a Venetian canal- 
scene, in which a gondola is introduced ; and this 
circumstance, along with the distinctly Italian character 
of the street-views introduced in other compartments, 
at once led me to assign the decorations of the ceiling 
to foreign painters. Sir John Hope informs me that 
the tradition in the family has always been that this 
was the case, that Italian workmen were employed 
upon this painted ceiling as well as on other parts of 
Pinkie. Each of the twelve compartments bears an 
explanatory Latin motto in black letters upon a white 
scroll, and beneath it is inscribed a further legend, in 



84 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



gold upon black. Greater value would have been 
given to Mr. Seton's paper had its author described 
these figure-subjects with such minuteness as should 
have indicated their connection with their double 
mottoes. Thus the compartment already referred 
to is summarily mentioned as ' a female figure with 
bandaged eyes, and a dark-complexioned dwarf at 
her feet.' But the female manifestly stands for 
Fortune, and the ill-favoured dwarf beside her wears 
a crown, holds a sceptre, and is clad in royal robes, 
illusti-ating the mottoes — Foiiima non mutal genus, and 
Bona mens omnibus palel, Omnes ad hoc tiobiles smniis. 
Again No. 17, described as 'two figures accompanied 
by dogs,' clearly represents a huntsman carrying off' to 
the chase his studious friend, — a poet crowned with a 
laurel wreath, who casts aside his lyre and book, 
illustrating the motto Firma amicilia. But, indeed, the 
limits of a single paper — either Mr. Seton's or my 
own — are quite inadequate to do full justice to this 
curious old ceiling. In these days when we have 
among us so many ' gleaners after Time,' when so 
many societies and individuals are engaged in exhaus- 
tively investigating the things of the past, we look, 
not without hope, for some adequate examination of 
this Painted Gallery at Pinkie. It would form an 
admirable and rewarding subject for a careful mono- 
graph, illustrated with accurate facsimile reproductions 
in colour of the figure compartments, along with such 
transcripts of the ornamental portions as should 
thoroughly explain the decorative scheme of the 
entire work ; while the letterpress might profitably 
include a comparison of the Pinkie ceiling with the 
panels from the Guise House, Castlehill, the decora- 
tions of Dean House, executed in l627, and the 
Nunraw ceiling, portions of all of which are preserved 
in the Museum of the Scottish Antiquaries, as also 



with tlie decorations at Earlshall, Falkland Palace, 
Culross, and Stobhall, and those formerly at CoUairnie 
Castle, and in a house at the High Street, Linlithgow, 
drawings or fragments of which are still preserved. 
Indeed the whole history of such decorative work hi 
our country — up till the period of the last-century 
interior decorations in Edinburgh, such as those by 
De la Cour recently existing at Milton House, the 
similar works executed by the Nories, and those in 
the mansion formerly occupied by Lord President Sir 
Thomas Miller, in Brown Square, Chambers Street, 
— has never yet received the systematic investigation 
which it deserves. 

Several of the other ceilings at Pinkie also merit 
attention as interesting examples of old Scottish work 
in plaster. Among these is the ceiling of one of 
the bedrooms in the oldest part of the house, on 
the Drawing-room floor, an eai'ly and rather rude, but 
spirited and individual, specimen, consisting of an 
oval central decoration of conventional leafage in 
shallow relief, with a boldly projecting fruit-like boss, 
along with winged cherub heads in the four corners of 
the apartment. The richest and most elaborate of all is 
the roof of the ' King's Room,' which is decorated with 
Seton arms and monograms, and with heavy projecting 
pendants, similar to those at Winton Castle. Of this 
apartment our artist has enabled us to give in our first 
article an excellent illustration, showing, among the 
furniture, certain old carved chairs which formerly 
belonged to Addison. In a third room, opening from 
the landing of the present stair, and itself forming part 
of the original staircase, is a ceiling exhibiting much 
later work, resembling some of the roofs of Charles the 
Second's time that exist at Holyrood, its monograms 
proving that it was executed while Pinkie was in the 
possession of the Tweeddale family. J. M. Grav. 




BROWNING ON ART 



85 



BROWNING ON ART. 



IT would be late in the day to speak of Browning's 
' many-sidedness.' This is a phrase which is 
somewhat worn as applied to Shakespeare, and I sup- 
pose it is because Browning comes nearest to him 
that he so frequently shares, along with his great 
predecessor, this distinction. Vai'iety is an essential 
quality of any artistic genius which would lay claim 
to greatness in the largest sense of the word. It is 
here that Browning so eminently outshines the 
Laureate. The mere material of the former would, 
as has been said, set up a dozen good poets for life. 
At all events, there can be no question as to the 
salient place of art as a topic in the poetry of Brown- 
ing. Several of his poems, as we shall see, are ex- 
plicitly upon art subjects, and random gleams of artistic 
influences may be seen to flash throughout his entire 
writings, which are full of allusions to great painters 
and their work. Mr. Ruskin says that Browning ' is 
unerring in every word he writes of the middle ages ' 
— a remark which may be taken as applying in large 
degree to the poet's thought upon mediaeval art. 

Browning has been called the best colourist in 
poetry after Keats. Spending a large part of his life 
in Italy, he has lived in the midst of the most splendid 
art the world has seen; and the glory of its unsm-- 
passable colour has doubtless imbued his fancy, and 
lent a powerful picturesqueness to not a little of his 
work. Perhaps even Rossetti, painter-poet though he 
was, does not show so brilliant a command of literary 
colour; for Browning evinces in this direction an in- 
trepid intensity rarely equalled. Keats may have 
been more lavish, but he is not so intense as Browning. 
It is as if our poet had dipped his pen in the match- 
less hues of the painters he loves so well. 

'And her eyes are dark and humid, like the depth on depth of 
lustre 

Hid i' the harebell, while her tresses, sunnier than I he wild- 
grape cluster, 

Gush in golden-tinted plenty down her neck's rose - misted 
marble. ' 

' Some lump, ah God ! of lapis lazuli^ 
Big as a Jew's head cut off at the nape, 
Blue as a vein o'er the Madonna's breast.' 

Mr. Birrell, in his entertaining Obiler Dkla, says 
Browning is art's historian. I should prefer to call 
him art's philosopher. From his poems you may 
gather many a philosophic interpretation of the nature 
of art, and of the function of the artist. The poet 
has drunk deep of the spirit of art, but not in unre- 
flective delight. His active brain (for Browning's can 
never rest) has been busy to discern the deep essen- 
tial principles of art — principles which he has seized 
with the penetrating intuition of the seer, and ex- 
pressed with the eager verve of the poet. Let us 
glance at a few of his poems which deal specially 



with the interests of the topic in hand. ' Fra Lippo 
Lippi,' a droll and piquant monologue, contains an 
admirable statement of the raison d'etre of art. The 
world, it is pointed out, is full of beauty and wonder, 
of varied colour and myriad shapes, and of the changes 
and surprises these effect. All this has been made by 
God, who has given it, not to be passed over or 
despised, but to be pondered over and gratefully en- 
joyed. So much none will deny. But now comes an 
objection which in everyday talk is often urged 
against one form or another of art. ' What is the use 
of the fanciful creations of your pictures, novels, or 
plays, when there 's plenty real life around me ? Give 
me fact, plain downright fact ! ' Such is the kind of 
argument we sometimes hear from prosaic philistine 
or piu-itanical bourgeois. Lippi replies that many 
have eyes and see not, and that the artist fulfils an 
important function in this, were it in nothing else, 
that by means of his livelier perception and selective 
instinct he brings under notice facts and beauties 
which had else gone unobserved. See, for instance, 
yonder face you pass so often in the street. You 
have never noticed how full of character and interest 
it is. But give Fra Lippo a bit of chalk, and you 
shall not soon forget it. Not only can the artist 
awaken fresh interest in common objects, he may 
evoke new love for things familiarity has made us 
ignore. 

' For, don't you mark ? we 're made so that we love 
First when we see them painted — things we 've passed 
Perhaps a hundred times, nor cared to see. 
And so they are better painted.' 

Thus the artist distributes the benefit of his keen 
sensibility and constructive power. 

' Art was given for that. 
God uses us to help each other so. 
Lending our minds out.' 

To the artist the world is not the blot and blank 
which it is to duller vision, and so he becomes for us 
the revealer of the deep suggestiveness of life and the 
interpreter of its varied passion. 

' Andrea del Sarto,' besides being one of the most 
beautiful and pathetic of Browning's poems, is full of 
pregnant hints about the essential worth of art. Del 
Sarto was called 'the faultless painter,' so complete 
was his mastery over artistic technique. 

' 'Tis easy, all of it — 
No sketches first, no studies — that 's long past — 
I do what many dream of all their lives.' 

But, with all his technical skill, his glory, at least as 
compared with that of the highest genius, such as 
Raphael's, falls far short of the ideal. For he knows 
that he has deliberately relinquished his endeavours 
after the noblest possible conceptions : he must give 



86 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



himself instead to the mechanical painting of the por- 
traits which will procure the money desired by his 
beautiful though faithless wife. (Is it always so 
romantic a motive which tempts painters nowadays 
to give their enei'gy to the delineation of smug and 
portly plutocrats ?) Andrea confesses with pathetic 
resignation that he has sacrificed his spiritual aspira- 
tions to his passion for his lovely but shallow and 
worldly wife. In this poem Browning strives to teach 
that the true greatness of art is conditioned by the 
loftiness of the inspiring molif, only in a very secondary 
degree by its technical brilliance. He observes else- 
where that 

' ihe liead of the adept 

May too much prize the hand, work unassailed 

By scruple of the better sense that finds 

An orb within each halo, bids gross flesh 

Free the fine spirit-pattern.' 

Spirit to technique is as the kernel to the husk. The 
imagined ideal must ever be in advance of the execu- 
tive power, for if the conception be such that it is 
capable of a completely adequate embodiment, it must 
be deficient in ideal. 

' A man's reach should exceed his grasp, 
Or what 's heaven for ? ' 

Is this not a lesson pertinent to-day ? The Pre- 
Raphaelite movement has helped to accentuate the 
value of accurate detail, and there is a danger of 
executive ability usurping the place of fine imagina- 
tion. Such an accusation indeed would be all abroad 
in the regard of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood estab- 
lished by Rossetti and Hunt ; for though fidelity to 
nature in the reproduction of details was, of course, 
one of its distinguishing features, that did not preclude 
the artist from spiritual energy and imaginative force 
{e.g. Hunt's ' Eve of St. Agnes,' and Rossetti's ' Dante's 
Dream'). But 'Andrea del Sarto' exemplifies the 
important truth that a painter's work will be really 
great just in proportion as the artist himself is great 
in mind and character. Andrea has wantonly shut 
himself out from the higher aspirations of which he 
knew himself capable ; and so his work, he sees, be- 
comes commonplace in conception, 

' My youth, my hope, my art being all toned down.' 

Milton has it that he who would write a great poem 
must first himself be a poem — ' a composition of the 
best and honourablest things.' So with the artist. 
He must be a composition of noble conceptions and 
pure ideals, of fine passion and spiritual aspiration. 
Much of his failure Andrea attributed to the deterior- 
ating influence of his worldly Lucrezia. Had she 
with her loveliness but brought a mind, and urged his 
soul to vaster issues, he might, he feels, have attained 
even to Raphael's glory. Here had been a mission 
for noble womanhood — to be the inspirer of elevated 
art. 

' Pictor Ignotus ' lays emphasis upon the duty a 
painter owes to himself as artist. This ' unknown 



painter ' of the sixteenth century sees a brother artist 
winning wealth and popidarity by pandering to the 
public taste. The obscure artist knows that, with the 
genius he feels to be his, he could easily eclipse the 
favoiu-ite if he chose to enter into such competition. 

' And like that youth ye praise so, all I saw 
Over the canvas could my hand have flung, 
Each face obedient to its passion's law. 
Each passion clear proclaimed without a tongue.' 

In order, however, to win this fame he would need 
to prostitute his gift of fire from God. But he will 
have no merchant traffic in his heart, nor brook his 
pictures being counted household stuff at the price of 
checking his higher development. None may care 
for his art, but he finds ample return for his toil in the 
privilege of living amid pure ideals, the pursuit of 
truth and beauty being its own reward. His pictures 
may soon die, mouldering on the damp wall's travertine, 
but during the painting of them he has been in that 
heaven for which, in virtue of his labour, he v/ill be 
the fitter when his toil is done. 

* So die my pictures, gently, surely die. 
O youth men praise so, holds their praise its worth ? 
Blown harshly, keeps the trump its golden cry ? 
Tastes sweet the water with such specks of earth ?' 

In Mr. Browning's latest volume, Parleyings with cer- 
luin People of Importance in their Daij (1887), one of 
the talks, constituting a poem of considerable length, 
is held with Francis Furini, who was a painter-priest 
of the seventeenth century. To paint the ' dear fleshly 
perfection of the human shape ' was the way appor- 
tioned to him of ' praising heaven and blessiiig earth.' 
In his pictures — 

' Rosed from top to toe in flush of youth, 
One foot upon the raossfringe, would some nymph 
Try with its venturous fellow if the lymph 
Were chillier than the slab-steijped fountain-edge. 
The while aheap her garments on its ledge 
Of boulder lay within hand's easy reach.' 

Report gave out that on his deathbed he repented 
of his work, and begged his friends to burn his crea- 
tions in the nude. But the poet refuses to believe 
that Furini's reason could be so ousted by foolish 
weakness. Rather will he think of the artist as rejoic- 
ing to his last hour in — 

' God's best and beauteous of magnificent 
Revealed to earth — the naked female form. ' 

To the ' mild moral-monger, scruple-splitting and 
sickly sensitive,' who would, in the interest of the 
artist, abolish all study of the nude, the poet replies 
that basest idle fancies are excluded from the artistic 
mind by the strenuous difficulty and high ideal of 

' Art's endeavour to express 
Heaven's most consummate of achievements, bless 
Earth by a semblance of the seal God set 
On woman, his supremest work.' 

The strictures passed upon this kind of study by 
the ' satyr masked as matron ' (presumably an allusion 
to the recent ' British Matron ' controversy), might be 



JONAS LIE 



87 



conceived as arising more probably from some disease 
of suppressed concupiscence, from the coarse blue-fly's 
instinct, than from a genuine moral sense, for that 
can be no sane ethical perception which 

* can perceive 
No better reason why she should exist — 
God's lily-limbed and blush-rose-bosomed Eve — 
Than as a hotbed for the sensualist 
To fly-blow with his fancies, make pure stuff 
Breed him back filth.' 

It is a gross and stupid libel that art is just a 
' safety-screen for a skulking vice." Nothing but 
phantasy of the severest purity could have ])roduced 
such forms as Michael Angelo's famous figures of 
Night and Morn. The human form is a type of 
beauty and projjortion, full of spiritual significance, and 



capable of expressing the content of the soul. To 
catch each fleeting loveliness of the human body, to 
preserve its noblest gestures and its loftiest mien, to 
arrest the decay of graceful strength, to fix the sweet- 
ness and serenity of beautiful feature — this is the 
function of art ; and by the exercise of this artistic 
function, and by the delight in such artistic creations, 
man best renders thanks to God who made 

' The type untampered with, the naked star.' 

The foregoing does not pretend to be an exhaustive 
exposition of Browning's thought upon art, but it is 
sufficiently suggestive of his point of view, and gives 
a fair sample of the fruitful ideas on this subject 
which may be found in the vast treasury of the poet's 
work. 11. M. Adamson. 



JONAS LIE. 



THE magnificent natural beauty of Norway has 
imbued the population inhabiting its deep \'er- 
dant valleys and dizzy 
mountain-heights with a 
high degree of poetical 
sentiment. Since the ear- 
liest ages their bards have 
been celebrated, and in 
our times many of the 
Norwegian authors rank 
high among Eui'opean men 
of letters. 

Among these Jonas Lie 
occupies an important 
place, both as a poet and 
as a man. Born on the 
fith November 18.'J3, at 
Eker, near Dranmien, he ■ 

left his birthplace at the 
age of five years for Trom- 
soe with his father, where 
the latter had been ap- 
pointed burgomaster. 
Here he spent the greater 
part of his childhood, grow- 
hig up amongst wild scen- 
ery, which to him was rich 
in poetic suggestiveness. 
The northern summer of , 
three months, with nights 
at times as light as day ; 
the nine months' winter 
appearing as one night ; 
the wide changing sea, with 

its fishing and shipping; the cliff's and mountains.^all 
spoke the grand and mystic language of Nature. At 
the same time, surrounded by the fantastic Norsemen, 
with their deeply-rooted faith in the wonderful and 



supernatural, he received 
delible impressions, while 




from them lively and in- 
his intelligence in other 
respects was only later and 
by degrees developed. He 
looked ujion the school as 
a place of exile, and the 
teachers as his enemies — a 
notion at the time quite 
common. He spent the 
latter period of his school- 
time in Bergen, the char- 
acteristic old Hanse town 
which yet in many things 
reminds us of the middle 
ages. Here he also made 
the acquaintance of many 
interesti)ig personages, and 
found new subjects for ob- 
servation and reflection. 
Entering the University of 
Christiania in 1851, he 
was brought into close con- 
tact with Ibsen, Bjornson, 
and Venge, the now dis- 
tinguished authors, who at 
that time began to become 
known. Jonas Lie had by 
this time ah'eady written 
several articles for the 
])ress, and published some 
less important poems. Of 
greater importance was un- 
doubtedly the companion- 
ship of the young and 
vivacious literary circle of Norway, a companionship 
which in a high degree aided in animating and 
developing Lie's own intelligence. He took the 
highest honours in the faculty of law in the year 






^. 



88 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



1858, and practised thereafter for six years as a 
lawyer in Kongsvinger. Jonas Lie's earlier inclinations 
leaned towards the Navy, but, to his great regret, he 
was prevented, on account of his shortsightedness, from 
realising his desire for a seafaring life. Through a 
crisis arising from altered circumstances in connection 
with the wood trade he ceased to exercise his pro- 
fession, and commenced, or rather continued with 
greater ardour his diligence, as an author. He pub- 
lished in the year 1864 a collection of poems, and was 
for some time editor of an illustrated paper for the 
people. 

Jonas Lie, however, removed to Christiania, and 
published in 1870 the work which really made his 
name known and admired in the Scandinavian countries. 
Den Fremsunle (The Seer), a most captivating and 
thoroughly original novel, in which he describes the 
natural features of the north, and their deep influence 
on the inhabitants, with a jjower of poetry almost 
without parallel. Here he has collected and repro- 
duced the impressions of his childhood with immense 
force and intensity. He teaches us to under- 
stand how the never-darkening summer days and 
the month - long winter nights affect the nerves, 
until a kind of mental disease arises in persons 
of an irritable nervous temperament. The power to 
look into the future, to have visions and revelations, is 
characteristic of these unfortunates. The young man, 
the hero of Den Fremsynie, compels our warmest 
sympathy and compassion as we follow his fortunes 
from childhood. The play in the fragrant sunny fields, 
his short love-dream, the wonderful and horrible poj)U- 
lar tales which already from childhood disposed his 
mind to a sombre belief in the dark natural ])owers, 
his later melancholy and despair, which ultimately 
change into a gentle and sad resignation, and end in 
the peace which terminates all earthly sufferings — are 
the leading features of a story which from beginning to 
end is most impressive. The natural descriptions are 
true master-pieces, and if we in reality have the 
slightest knowledge of the circumstances related, we 
instantly believe every word thereof — we feel it to be 
true. Generally, credibility is one of Lie's most pro- 
minent traits as an author. He depicts the most 



minute details with an assurance and reliance which 
makes one seem to listen to an eyewitness. He is 
undoubtedly one of the greatest naturalists of our time. 
Den Ffemsynte procured for Lie an income, and he im- 
mediately travelled to Italy, where he stayed for about 
three years. Ever since, with the exception of a few 
longer or shorter visits to Norway, he has resided abroad, 
partly in Germany and Italy, and, since 1882, in France. 
He generally spends the summer in Berchtesgaden. 
Lotsen og hans Hiisfru (The Pilot and His Wife), 1874, 
Rutland, 1881, Ga pa (' Go on !'), 1882, all tales of the 
sea and sailor life, have been received with imdivided 
approbation by the public and the critics. His first 
two descriptions of elegant society life, Thoniax Ro.tx 
and Adam Schrader, roused less admiration notwith- 
standing their many undisputed merits. 

Lie published at Christmas 1888 a new novel, 
Maisa Jons, in which he depicts the life of a seam- 
stress fi-ora early years till a more mature age, with its 
arduous labours and pale and waning hopes. Livs 
Slaven (Life Slave), Familjen pa Gilge (The Family 
at Gilge), Kommendorens D'Ottre (The Commander's 
Daughters), and other novels, as also several small 
stories, have later, undoubtedly placed him in the 
foremost rank of the authors of the North. 

The Norwegian Storthing has conferred upon him a 
pension. By his amiable and attractive personality 
Jonas Lie has gained many friends, who in him equally 
admire the warm-hearted philanthropic man and the 
admirable author. 

In 1 8()6 he was married to his cousin, Thomasine 
Lie, and has faithfully been accompanied by her in all 
his travels, as well as through the many shifting fates 
of his life. In this little, delicate, intelligent woman 
he has a constantly interested fellow-labourer in his 
authorship. His works have a very large circulation 
in Norway, and have been translated into Gennan, 
French, and Italian, and a few smaller ones into 
English. The friends of Jonas Lie's pen, or the whole 
Scandinavian north, expect still greater pleasure from 
his authorship, and await with liveliest interest ever_v 
new production he gives to the world. 

Waltkr Runeberg. 



THE PILLARS OF SOCIETY ON THE S i'AGE. 



THE rapidity with which the plays of Ibsen have 
sprung into fame in England, late in the day as 
it is, is phenomenal, but it is not mysterious. When 
one remembers that during the last few years the 
leading intellectual tendencies have been precisely in 
the direction taken by Ibsen, that opinion both upon 
the structure of society and upon individual develoj)- 
ment has undergone great changes, involving the de- 
molition of old gods and perhaps also the erection of new 
ones — involving, indeed, an extensive re-adjustment of 



ideals — it is no longer strange that a place shoidd be 
found on the stage for a dramatist who takes account 
of the currents of thinking of his time. It is not too 
much to say that it is now the fashion to be Socialistic 
after a fashion. While practical persons are working 
away with their noses to the grindstone, and seeing 
no further than these. Socialism is in the streets, in 
Parliament, in the press, in society, and now even on 
the stage. The theatre-going public, loving leisure 
and luxury, and, above all, amusement, is perhaps the 



THE PILLARS OF SOCIETY ON THE STAGE 



89 



last whom one would expect to be attracted by plays 
which ai-e neither melodramatic nor shady, whose 
ethics are as far removed as possible from the maudlin 
pseudo-morality of the modern comedy. Though Ibsen 
has now been seen on the stage in London, that is 
really all that can be said. It would be quite 
too much to expect that he should already have 
made a furore, and that a queue should wait at the 
theatre doors as for a new comic opera. Beside a 
modern melodrama Ibsen is indeed tedious. His 
people prose, there is no stage villain, and the hero is 
quite a commonplace person. There is no real fire- 
engine or hansom cab, and nobody is garrotted, or shot, 
or poisoned in the course of the whole play. For 
those blase persons who can enjoy nothing less than a 
mortality of at least five per cent., Ibsen is undeniably 
dull. To use the language of a highly intelligent critic 
who belongs to this class, Ibsen needs to be edited by 
some one who would bring his play into harmony with 
the requirements of modern drama : that is to say, 
tiiat the English playwright should adapt it as he 
adapts French comedies. But the English playwright 
forgets that an average comedy is much nearer his 
level than Ibsen, that he is not always successful 
even in that, and that an adaptation which would 
please him would leave out Ibsen and leave nothing. 
If the English public will not stand Ibsen, then 
let it not be tempted to patronise Bowdler. The 
large audience that witnessed with evident delight 
the performance of The Pillars oj Sociehj at the 
Opera Comique in London on l6th July, showed, 
at least so far as one section of the public is con- 
cerned, that Ibsen, faithfully translated and adequately 
performed, has a fascination that no other dramatist 
has at the moment. One means of accounting for 
this has been suggested, namely, that Ibsen's adop- 
tion of the Socialistic criticism of society has been 
presented at a time when the atmosphere is charged 
with such ideas ; but in addition to this something 
must be set down to Ibsen's dramatic power. Apart 
from the satire, the mere power of presentation is 
immense, and, like all great things, very easily and 



simply arrived at. The bourgeois society with its 
tittle-tattle, its poverty of imagination and limited 
interests, is stage suflicient for the exhibition of even 
the greater motives, and we may, without serious risk 
of error, multiply Consul Bernick, the unregenerate, 
by many hundreds of thousands to find the props upon 
which Society rests. The dialogue is often common- 
place ; but the effect of the whole is invariably the 
generation of an atmosphere which compels inspiration 
of a fresh current of new life. He who can achieve 
this by means of the stage is undoubtedly a dramatic 
artist, and if the ethic which is involved is a fresh and 
not a conventional ethic, so much the better. If an 
artist be artist first and moralist, afterwards, why 
should one object to his filling the double role ? 

The Pillars oJ' Society was performed at a matinee, a 
single performance alone being contemplated. There 
was a temptation therefore to avoid unnecessary 
trouble in putting the piece on the stage ; but save 
for one or two slips of little consequence, the per- 
formance was excellent from beginning to end. One 
of the peculiarities of Ibsen's plays is that no single 
person in the cast has the power to carry off the 
honours of the piece. A star would be out of place ; 
there is an equality in the dramatis personw that is 
almost ultra-democratic. Miss Genevieve Ward as 
Lona Hessel was entirely at home. It seems that she 
has long desired to play this part, and has ail old- 
standing admiration for the dramatist. Bernick, 
Aune, and Tonnesen were perhaps the most careful 
studies. Miss Vera Beringer, known as Little Lord 
Fauntleroy, played Olaf. As much of literaiy and 
artistic London as remained in town at the end of the 
season was there, manifestly highly sympathetic and 
appreciative. In spite of the circumstance that in one 
sense Ibsen is caviare to the general, there is a strong 
probability that an enterprising manager, by choosing 
well his time and his players, might even make a great 
success of a well-judged selection of Ibsen's dramas, 
for their human interest appeals even to the ' profane 
vulgar ' when all is said. 




90 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



ISABELLA ; OR, THE POT OF BASIL. 



THIS tale of ■ Fair Isabel, poor simple Isabel,' seems 
strangely at variance with the tone of most of 
oiu- nineteenth century literature. It carries us back 
to those old-world times when the air was all alive 
with the music of troubadour and trouvere, when a 
great gulf still lay fixed between the cottage and the 
castle, and when the high-born ladies and knights 
loved with an absorbing and passionate tenderness un- 
known in these more degenerate days. But while it 
sends us back to the times of Boccaccio and Chaucer, 
we find ourselves haunted by a vague feeling of some- 
thing distinctively modern, and we discover that this 
poem has suggested to us the new school of sestheti- 
cism that has arisen since Keats wrote ; the school 
which seems to strive to unite the primitive simplicity 
and realism of the past with the complexity and analy- 
tic tendencies of the present ; the school to which 
Morris and Swinburne, the Rossettis and Burne-Jones 
belong. 

habcl/a breathes of medifevalism, — of glooms and 
languid lovers, of bowers and vows, of terraces and 
tears,— of all the hundred and one little conven- 
tionalities that go to make up the delicately sweet 
life of highly-cultured Arcadianism. As we read 
we seem to look upon one of Rossetti's pictures, 
upon one of those eminently unsatisfactory works 
which at first sight we condemn as unnatural and 
affected, and beside which we yet find ourselves linger- 
ing, held by their curious interest, their undertone of 
suggestive thought, their intensity of unfothomable 
meaning. Taught to look upon nature by Words- 
worth, and upon art by Ruskin, we recoil at first from 
Rossetti's artificial trees and shrubs, among which are 
enshrined his languid figures with their strange dreamy 
eyes and full sensuous faces. There is no outlet in 
these pictures, we say impatiently, no open air, no 
sweep of horizon-bound sea or cloud-flecked moor- 
land — no life, or impulse, or action ; and we turn away 
only to find ourselves coming back to gaze once more 
upon those strange groups in their green and blue 
draperies, hemmed in by the close hedges and banks 
of tall lilies. 

And the attraction of these pictures of Rossetti is, I 
believe, exactly the same that we find in a story like this 
of Isabella and Lorenzo. In reading the Put of Basil, 
as in looking at the 'Blessed Damozel' or 'Fiammetta,' 
we find ourselves suddenly transported from this bust- 
ling, receptive, analytic century into a remote and 
placid age. An age, do we say? Hardly that, for 
works of this class seem scarcely to belong to any 
special age or clime — rather an environment of ideallv 
harmonious tranquillity and leisure. Isabella lived in 
Italy, we see ' The Blessed Damozel ' in heaven, but 
the atmosphere of the one is equally that of the other. 
A garden where the nightingale's song alternates with 



the lay of the troubadour, green alleys where lovers 
stray ; these represent the heaven of the painter, the 
tumultuous faction-torn Florence of the poet. The 
story is independent of time or place. England, or 
Spain, or Germany would serve the purpose of a stage 
scene as well as Italy, and if Rossetti's pictures are 
remote from this age of steam and electricity, Boc- 
caccio's sad tale told in Keats' sweet numbers is not 
less so from the century that echoed with the cries of 
Guelf and Ghibelline. 

Still less can Isabel/a be termed a poem descriptive 
of the human soul, and thus claim the prei'ogative of 
being independent of time and situation. This plea 
may serve for Shakespeare's characters. Romeo and 
Macbeth and Hamlet may live when and where they 
please, and still their manhood would be the same, 
distinguished from all others by the dignity of its 
passions of love, or envy, or despair. But Isabella and 
Lorenzo are scarcely characters. They live, or at least 
they love and die. He flutes ; she embroiders. He 
rides past ; she looks from the lattice and waves her 
fair hand. But their action is mechanical and their 
love conventional. They are as clay in the hands of a 
relentless destiny. They are as puppets which move 
to the music of their own sad story. Think for a 
little of what such a subject as this would have be- 
come in Browning's hands. First of all we should have 
breathed the atmosphere of Ital3^ All its glorious past, 
all its gorgeous beauty of colour and form, all the 
treasures of the city of the Mediceans, pf Michael 
Angelo, and of Dante, would have surrounded us. 
Then the lovers would have appeared before us — 
Isabella, lovely and gentle, but absolutely distinct from 
any other woman who has lived and loved ; Lorenzo, 
brave and noble; a stronger Sordello, but a man alone 
and unlike all others. We should realise the depth of 
their passion, but they would not love in the simple, 
whole-hearted manner described by Keats. Our great 
poet would give us a glimpse into the workings of 
these two souls. He would show us their fears and 
doubts, their emotions and impulses, the tremulous 
silence of their growing aff"ection, the triumphant union 
of their hearts. We should see the faces of the brothers 
— the slight diversities in their cold, cruel natures, 
their crime, and above all their remorse. W^e should 
see how the dignified and wounded silence of Isabel 
would merge into stony despair, and how despair 
roused to action by the vision would urge her forth 
into the pine forest to see the tomb of her loved one. 
But here, I think, Browning would cease. No modern 
poet would venture to allow his heroine to cut off her 
dead lover's head with a blunt knife and carry the 
ghastly trophy home to cherish in a flower-pot. Keats 
feels obliged to apologise for this piece of realism : 
old Boccaccio's unconscious childlike simplicity could 



SOME EXTRACTS FROM JAMES THOMSON'S NOTEBOOKS 



91 



alone pass gracefully over the horrid idea, and we too, 
as our minds conceive it, sigh — 

' Oh for the gentleness of old Romance, 
The simple plaining of a minstrel's song ! ' 

No, we cannot judge this old story by any of the 
canons of our modern literai-y criticism. We must take 
it as it stands, just as we accept AH Baba and the 
Foiiij Thieves or Cinderella. We must think of 
Isabella shut up behind the great green hedges of her 
garden just as we think of the Sleeping Beauty in her 
drowsy palace. Lorenzo is the prince disguised as a 
minstrel who climbs that ' Western hill ' that seems 
to shut in so closely the whole landscape of the story. 
The brothers are of course the conventional wicked 
men of the fairy tale, — sons, we do not doubt, of those 
cruel monsters who slew the Babes in the Wood. And 
the nurse, too, so correctly aged and skinny, is, we 
suspect, the fairy godmother who was too late for the 
christening, and who tries to atone for her neglect by 
digging up the grave of her dear godchild's lover with 
her ' lean hands.' Yes, this is all a sweet old-world 
fairy tale in spite of its modern setting and gruesome 
end. And even at the end we must not allow ourselves 
to be too much cast down. The Basil Plant after all 
was but another Narcissus ; and I think we may feel 
very sure that when Isabella died, and Music and 
Echo were allowed to sing and sigh as they pleased, 
some thornless rose or snow-white passion-flower would 
spring from her grave, to interlace its delicate sprays 
with the fragrant dusky boughs that grew so luxuri- 
antly from poor Lorenzo's flower-pot tomb. It is a 
comic little story after all, full of quaint conceits that 
should make us weep, but that provoke our irreverent 
nineteenth century souls to mirth. We see the head 
of the poor young man brought home by the Niobe- 
like Isabella, and we note how she combs his hair and 
deposits each of his wonderful mediaeval eyelashes 
neatly on his waxen cheeks. But there is nothing 
grim or ghastly in all this. It is ' moiu'iiing in 
lavender kid gloves,' and we cannot but smile at the 
composed and ladylike tenderness with which we are 
told Isabella 

' Still comb'd and kept 
Sighing all day, and still she kissed and wept.' 

In the hands of a robust writer the ghoul-like idea 



of this gentle lady hacking off her lover's head with a 
blunt instrument, and keeping it continually by her 
side in a pot, would, when worked out, result in a 
ghastly and revolting tale. But Boccaccio, or at least 
Keats, is permeated by a spirit of delicate sestheticism, 
and the grace of his thought and diction veils all that 
is horrible from our eyes, and only leaves the chastened 
tragedy of the story in sight. It is this treatment 
that entitles Isabella ; ur, 'The Pot of Basil to a place 
among grander poems. Full of conceits as it may be, 
weak as the characters, and half comic as the tragedy 
may seem, the poem yet bears the impress of a master's 
touch. It lies in the haze of a warm transparent 
atmosphere that draws all its conflicting parts into one 
united whole. It breathes of delicate idealism, an 
idealism that triumphs even over that most realistic 
scene in the forest which in the hands of some writers 
would have become loathsome and abhorrent in the 
extreme. It is as if Keats' tone of mind were too 
refined to grasp the grimness of the bare story. He 
has not been trained in our later school of literature 
to fling himself back into the realities and actual 
circumstances of the scene which he describes. He is 
a courtier and a gentleman who will not condescend 
to change his usual decorous attire and strut upon the 
stage even for our intellectual edification. And this 
same grave old-worldliness of demeanour clings about 
his works. They are like delicately nurtured children 
who, while full of playful pranks and fancies, yet move 
with a quaint and pretty dignity, born of innate refine- 
ment and gentle breeding. They mark the period 
when the long-sustained and carefully wrought diction 
of the eighteenth century poetry had been but touched 
by the breath of the coming spring-time of new impulses 
and ideas. Harmony of numbers had not yet been 
lost in complexity of thought. In these poems the 
beauty of the robe is still of more value than its 
accurately historical cut and finish. The grace and 
loveliness of Keats sprang like the Basil Plant from 
the deadness and artificiality of the eighteenth century 
school of poetry. But fragrant as the soft greenery of 
its boughs may be, we still look longingly at it for the 
flowers of passion and pathos, those flowers which in 
our fancy's eye we have seen growing from Isabel's 
tomb. M. Hill. 



SOME EXTRACTS FROM JAMES THOMSON'S NOTE-BOOKS. 



WHEN the greater part of the Life of James 
Thomson was already in print, one of ' B.V.' 's 
surviving friends put in my hands ten or twelve small 
note-books, dating from I860 to 1873, in which were 
jotted down, among various personal memoranda of 
more or less interest, some exquisitely neat pencil- 
drafts of 'Weddah' and other poems of Thomson's, 
and some remarkable descriptive studies of the sky- 
scenery observed by him in his daily rambles. Of 



these last I propose to quote a few specimens, which 
may be interesting as showing the intensity of Thom- 
son's reverence for the beauty of nature, iconoclast 
though he was in some respects. Mr. Ruskin has 
complained that the sky is just that part of nature 
which is least attended to by man, and that few can 
tell him ' of the forms and the precipices of the chain 
of tall white mountains ' that often girds the horizon at 
noon. Well, here was one man at least who could 



92 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



have given the desired information ; and it is singular 
indeed that this man was a pessimist of the most pro- 
nounced type, and, at the very time when most of these 
passages were written, liimself a dweller in that ' City 
of Dreadful Night ' with which his name is chiefly — 
perhaps too exclusively — connected. 

The first entry was written in I86I, in the Isle of 
Jersey, where Thomson was at that time stationed as 
an army schoolmaster. It should be mentioned that 
the Jersey scenery, which made a deep impression on 
Thomson's mind, is reproduced in several of his later 
poems, notably in ' Richard Forest's Midsummer 
Night.' 

'Oct. 26, 1S61, 5 P.M.— The sun, large, defined, 
tremulous, like a beryl or crystal globe full of amber 
light, stood on a long low ridge of ashen cloud. Above 
it some cloudlets, lustrous as an aureole, floated in the 
calm element pervaded with that soft greenish hue so 
common at sunrise and sunset. As the sun's broad 
shield was drawn slowly down, these cloudlets lost 
their lustre, and the bank of cloud grew more and 
more dun except for the large flecks of fire-snow 
scattered along its summit. With the dark-brown castle, 
and the dim St. Aubin shore, and the broad wet sands, 
and one boat in the oifing, the picture was fine.' 

The remaining passages were written in London, 
where Thomson took up his abode in 1S62, to face a 
life of increasing poverty, disease, and despair. Some 
of the sentiments expressed by Richard Jeff'eries seem 
to be anticipated in the following words : — 

' Juljj 1S()6. — I am conscious of a veil between my- 
self and nature which sense and spirit vainly strive to 
pierce, and behind which they divine manifold beauties 
and mysteries. Could they pierce this veil, they 
would doubtless find another, still as much hidden, 
still no more revealed, for the increment of knowledge 
is as zero to the infiiaite unknown. When you have 
been brought to see through one of these veils, it is 
for you as if it had never been ; you cannot perceive, 
or even remember, what hindered your vision. Nature 
is not thoroughly intimate with any one in these days. 
Even her chief favourites lose their self-possession 
when they write or speak of her, and cannot commune 
with her alone serenely and without insatiate yearning.' 
'Sept. 1866'. — Heavy rain all morning; clear after- 
noon, with fresh breeze. Went after six to Winchmore 
Hill. On road home heavy shower, which cleared up 
as I i-eached the Edmonton and Enfield road. There, 
about the same spot from which I stared at the sunset 
last Sunday, I beheld a magnificent sight. The one 
rain-rack was drawing off, skirted with wan light of 
foam ; into the immense waste of the blue sky above 
the stars came forth, like ships upon an unknown sea ; 
and behind, from the west, the next storm upheaved a 
vast livid mountain solidly advancing with mountains and 
mountain-ranges shadowed on its enormous breast, and 
skirted, it also, with a foam of wan light. Low dark 
trees along its base were seen in the rift of yellow 
storm-light ; a massy wall of great trees led right on 



to it ; a large golden planet rode supreme above the 
flying scud in the south. 

' Home in rain and thunder and lightning, that 
seemed to envelop one's face close as a veil pressed 
back by the wind. Dogs and cattle moaned uneasily, 
as if with pain.' 

'Oct. 186s. — The last most beautiful day in the 
year, one might think. At one, down Piccadilly, along 
the Green Park ; the sun so warm, and the sky that 
exquisite blue of late autumn and a few days in winter 
— the blue of warm sunshine in frore clear air. 

' After dinner, to Hyde Park and Kensington 
Gardens ; the latter never charmed me more power- 
fully. The late winds and the heavy shower of Satur- 
day had swept off" all infirm leaves, so that sometimes, 
walking under half-clothed trees, but half-clothed in 
bright green, one almost fancied it was spring again. 
Only the ground was strewn thick with yellow and 
russet dead leaves. 

' Opposite the Palace (about three o'clock) was in- 
expressibly beautiful, with a subtle and somewhat 
sorrowfid beauty. Three Sundays ago, I had seen the 
Palace like a thin dark etching in front of abysmal 
sunlight, the trees on either hand like itself; but as 
their ring swept round to the main avenue where I 
stood (the avenue leading to the Serpentine and 
separated from the Palace by the basin), they gradu- 
ally showed brown and green and solid from the 
shadowy darkness of the west. But to-day the sky 
was quiet over the Palace, soft sad grey, where the 
sun only appeared by a rift of white light. Spreading 
and growing out from this grey were those mottled 
fleecy clouds which always remind one of down and 
plumes, and which indeed, as to-day, so often are 
shaped into vast sweeping wings, suspended in the 
sky of soft clear azure. The old painters and poets 
may have clothed their archangels and cherubim from 
such clouds; they loved just such azure. The trees 
had that spring beauty that all the main lines of their 
branching, and much of the most delicate tracery of 
their sprays and branchlets, could be distinguished 
through the thinned leafage. But this was brown 
and deep green and bronze, yet tenderly beautiful as 
the first green of spring, perhaps more beautiful, as 
the tenderness of memory and regret is sweeter than 
the tenderness of anticipation and hope. 

' The avenues leading away over the thick dead 
leaves under the clear-pencilled stems and branches 
into the quiet sky of tender azure and soft grey were 
wonderfully beautiful and strange ; so that, discerning 
the obelisk to Sjieke down one of them, you found 
yourself dreaming for a moment you were in another 
clime. At four, the sky all covered with uniform 
dusky grey ; at five, soft rain commencing to fall.' 

It is pitiable to think of the poet who could hold 
such musings as these turning back to his lonely 
lodging in a dingy street of Pimlico, where, a couple 
of months previously, as we learn fi-om the note-book, 
he had been compelled by stress of poverty to ' take 



THE QUEEN OF THULE 



93 



bedroom instead of parlour ' — a brief entry which tells 
its tale too eloquently well. What wonder that the 
heavens and stars should, in his darker moods, have 
appeared to him to be nothing better than a mockery 
and a fraud ? — 

' If «e could near them with the flight unflown, 
We should but find them worlds as sad as this, 
Or suns all self-consuming like our own, 

Enringed by planet worlds as much amiss : 
They wax and wane through fusion and confusion ; 
The spheres eternal are a grand illusion. 
The empyrean is a void abyss.' 

Here, to conclude, is a passage, apparently written in 
1 867, which has a pathos of its own when read in 



conjunction with the story of Thomson's life — his 
early bereavement and long solitary struggles : — 

' I had walked two or three hom-s of dusk and night 
about London, musing so deeply that I scarcely noticed 
anything. When near home, a girl's pleasant laugh 
aroused me, and I saw her walking iiappy with her 
lover. But I was startled as I grew conscious of the 
immense abysses across which my mind perceived her. 
Her dress had brushed mine a moment back, yet the 
star glittering above the house in front of me was not 
more remote than she. In the midst of the ocean, or 
a void of the firmament of space, one would not be 
more isolated than when sunk in deep thought.' 

H. S. Salt. 



THE QUEEN OF THULE. 



THE Queen of Thule loved a lord 
As poor as poor could be : 
Her people pled with her to wed 
The Prince of Orcadie. 



' Three dark-brown hinds I killed, and then- 

My heart still pants withal — 
I killed a gallant stag of ten : 

His horns may grace your hall.' 



She thought her strength of love at length 
Would make their wishes fade ; 

So night by night the lovers met 
Deep in a forest-glade. 



' I like you not, dark man ; your brow 

Is heavier than the night. 
Away, away ! — Come, Harold, now. 

And end my woman's fright.' 



A streamlet, like a wind-blown lyre^ 
Now paused, now murmured soft ; 

The moon came like a lily on fire 
With love, and watched them oft : 



' Cry louder, Queen ; your voice nuist rend 

The grave, or find instead 
The trump of doom, if you would send 

A message to the dead. 



She played eavesdropper to their talk ; 

From heaven she bent her head ; 
And in her star-attended walk 

She pondered what they said. 



' An hour we fought ; the fight was hot, 

I flung away the sheath : 
Here, on my sword, his blood lies cold ; 

His corpse, upon the heath.' 



Why is the Queen alone to-night ? 

' Come, come,' she cries, ' to me. 
O wind, breathe low ! — My Harold ? — No ! 

The Prince of Orcadie ! 



' Why did you this } ' ' For love of you.' 
' Then with your wicked sword 

Mix my life's flood with that sweet blood 
Of him my soul adored.' 



' What brings you here .'' ' 'A phant fate 
Puts you into my hand : 

So yield you now. Heaven knows my vow- 
To rule you and your land.' 



' Not so ; I did your people's will : 
Now must you be my wife.' 

' What ! murder on my heart's door-sill 
My only love, my life. 



' You told me that you loved me, sir ; 

And, sure, it made me rue 
That you must pine, since love of mine 

Can never be for you. 



• Then rouse up with your bloody sword 

The love you have bereft. 
And straight demand my heart and hand ! 

Is there no lightning left ? ' 



' Sir, you must leave me.' ' Thus, alone .'' 
That were a gentle deed !'.... 

'What make you here?' ' I chased the deer 
All day upon my steed. 



■ My Queen, I saw his thievish glance, 
The untimely smile, the fear ; 

I saw his vision like a lance 
Pierce him that had your ear. 



94 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



' I marked him gaze till he could feast 

His eyes youi- eyes upon, 
Like that ecstatic orient priest 

Who watches for the dawn. 

' And when your whisper blessed his ears, 

I saw his soul rejoice, 
Like some far traveller who hears 

The dusky Memnon's voice. 

' And when your hand touched his for joy. 

Or in the press by luck 
Blown like a lily, I saw the boy 

Reel like one lightning-struck. 



' And when your breath of eastern spice ' 

' O God, give o'er ! ' cried she. 
' Such sights,' he said, ' would melt cold ice 

To fiery jealousy. 

' What more ? I struck young Harold dead 

In fair fight at a stone, 
Whereon I placed his golden head ; 

And there he lies alone. 

' Two streams meet there, and sweetly prate 

Of all their wandering ways. 
Like children when their hearts are great 

With deeds of holidays : 

' They heeded not when we two fought ; 

They heed not that pale lord ' 

' Is it his blood that wanders there 

Upon your dreadful sword ? ' 

She took the sword ; it made her reel : 
Her tears cavne in a flood ; 



They fell upon the ruddy steel. 
And mingled with the blood. 

But with her raven hair she wiped 

The tear-drenched blood away : 
A moonbeam strayed along the blade, 

Then left it cold and gray. 

' Now, hell-brand, do your work ! ' she cried. 
And ran him through and through. 

The sword stood quivering in his side ; 
But still his breath came true. 

' Prince, are you dead ? ' she hoarsely .said. 

He smiled upon the Queen : 
' No ; I am dying for your love 

As I have always been : 

' So, give me now your hand to kiss.' 

She gave the Prince her hand. 
' This steel is cold : take now good hold, 

And pluck away the brand.' 

She plucked it out, and let it fall : 

His soul had not yet passed. 
' The sword I slew with slays me too,' 

He said, and gripped it fast. 

And then he gasped between his teeth, 

' Before my soul can part, 
This thirsty sword must have a third,' 

And stabbed her to the heart. 

In snowy white the pale moon rolls. 

As in a winding-sheet. 
Three bodies pale : and three new souls 

Are at the judgment-seat. 

John Davidson. 



NOTES AND REVIEWS. 



We reproduce by fuU-page illustration a landscape, ' Winter on 
the Cairn,' by Mr. James Paterson. This picture was notable 
among the landscapes exhibited this year at the New English Art 
Club. Unfortunately the strongly-painted sky, with its heavy 
masses of cloud, is not rendered with full justice in the plate. 

The vacant Chair of English Literature in Glasgow University 
has been filled by the appointment of Professor Bradley of Univer- 
sity College, Liverpool. Mr. Bradley is a brother of the Dean of 
Westminster, and was formerly Fellow and Lecturer of Balliol 
College, O.'iford. 

The New Fellowship, a society whose members may be said 
to agree generally to consecrate themselves to an altruistic life, has 
just instituted the publication of an organ. The Sower is one penny 
quarterly, and is edited by Mr. Maurice Adams, author of a 
pamphlet on The Ethics of Social Reforin. It is not quite fair to 
judge from a first issue, but there is not much in this one that is 
either novel or interesting. The bulk of the number is occupied by 
a lecture on 'The True Life of the Citizen in view 'of the Future,' 
by Mr. Stopford Brooke. It is unfortunate that so many publica- 
tions of this sort should lack the virility which alone can make 
them influential in spreading ideas. Somehow we seem drifting 



into a phase of maudlin pseudo-intellectualism. The fundamental 
ideas of the 'New Fellowship,' 'The Pioneer Club,' and similar 
associations are well worthy of propagation, but no good can come 
of this unless those who propagate them cultivate some of the 
virtues of masculine expression. 

An experiment in education which will be watched with interest 
Ijy educationists all over the countiy is about to be tried in Derby- 
shire. The plans of the promoters are founded upon the theories 
of Herbert Spencer and others, and involve a definite attempt to 
cultivate and educate the nature of the scholar as a whole. Thus 
the course of education is divided into four sections, namely, 
(I) physical and manual, (2) artistic and imaginative, (3) literary 
and intellectual ; and (4) moral and religious. Physical training 
will include instruction in handicrafts and in design. The pro- 
vision of Ksthetic stimuli will also be definitely taken into account. 
In intellectual training more definite adaptation of means to ends 
than is usual in public schools will be the leading feature. The 
atmosphere of the school is intended to be one of sympathy and 
helpfulness, rather than competition and overreaching. Abbots- 
holme, a mansion near Rocester in Derbyshire, has been secured, 
and the school will be opened in October 1SS9. The following 



NOTES AND REVIEWS 



95 



are the names of the principal teachers: — Cecil Reddie, B.Sc, 
Ph.D., formerly science master at Fettes College, Edinburgh, and 
at Clifton College; R. F. Muirhead, M.A., St. Catherine's 
College, Cambridge; Edward Carpenter, M.A., formerly Fellow 
of Trinity Hall, Camliridge ; and William Cassels, formerly 
partner in Messrs. Walter Macfarlane & Co., Saracen Foundry, 
Glasgow. Mr. Ashbee of Toynbee Hall, Mr. Dickinson, and 
others, will assist. 

Black and White Drawings by Mr. Biscomee Gardner. 
— This is an interesting little collection of original monotone pic- 
tures by an artist whose better-known work has given him the 
foremost j^Iace amongst English wood-engravers. Certain of the 
charming quahties'of Mr. Gardner's reproductions are evident in 
these drawings : the same delicacy of execution, decided modelling, 
and that successful translation of tone and colour into black and 
white which often amply compensates for the want of variety 
in this artist's mediums. The four views of Burford Lodge 
are specimens of landscape portraiture that leave little to be 
desired, although, perhaps, more artistic qualities are to be found 
in much of his other work, namely, in such drawings as (iS'o. 6) 
' Ilighworth Farm,' a pretty composition called ' The Miller's 
Cottage,' and in the luminous sky of ' Netley Farm Yard.' The 
sketches done in the Fymwy \'alley have, besides much else, also 
an historical value, l>eing the last record of a village that has 
yielded to the necessities of civilisation, and now rests beneath the 
waters of a vast lake or reservoir. The few drawings executed 
in charcoal, which are placed at the end of this little gallery, are 
characterised by more freedom of handling than the pictures in 
wash. No. 42 is an especially and exceedingly impressive and 
well-arranged composition. 

Summer Legends. — By Rudolph Baumbach. Translated by 
Helen B. Dole. London : Walter Scott. 

The botanical fairy tale is a somewhat novel and certainly a 
fruitful, idea. Baumbach's Sommer-Miirehen are well known in 
Germany, which may be said to divide with Norseland the honour 
of being par excellence the land of the fairies. Graceful, quaint, 
and humorous, the tales, excellently translated by Miss Dole, may 
worthily be placed with those of Hans Andersen and Grimm. 

Where Love Is There God Is Also. What Men Live By. The Two 
Pilgrims. By COUNT ToLSTOi. London : Walter Scott. 
These three booklets have been published separately in a some- 
what novel form, the tales having already appeared in the edition 
of Tolstoi's works now being published by Mr. Walter Scott. It 
is not too much to say of Tolstoi's works in general, and of these 
little books in particular, that they are among the most admirable 
religious writings of this generation. There is a wholesome pre- 
judice against the moral tale ; but this prejudice must give way 
before the consummate artistic ethic of Tolstoi'. Where Love Is may 
some day be accepted as the evangel of a new religion of humanity 
{as opposed to the current religion of divinity), which, consciously 
or unconsciously, it appears to be Tolstoi's mission to aid in 
establishing. 

Three Lectures on English Literatnre. By William S. MacCor- 

MICK, M.A. Paisley and London : Alexander Gardner, 1S89. 
For several years Mr. MacCormick has acted as assistant to Pro- 
fessor Nichol, and also as Lecturer in English Literature at Queen 
Margaret's College, Glasgow. He was a candidate for the Chair 
of English Literature in Glasgow University, recently vacated by 
Mr. Nichol. The three lectures in the little book which he has 
just published are upon English Literature and University Educa- 
tion, and upon Wordsworth and Browning. The first lecture is a 
reply to Professor Freeman's Contemporary Review article on 
* Language and Literature,' and in the other two lectures an 
endeavour is made to institute a comparison between Browning and 
Wordsworth. The first article contains a plea for the study of 
English literature at the universities, and some observations upon 
attitude in study. There is no concealing the fact that Words- 
worth, unconsciously comic poet as he was, is dull, sometimes 



deadly dull ; but Mr. MacCormick's lecture is as lively as can be 
expected in so depressing a subject. The lecture on Browning is 
suggestive and interesting. All the lectures are, indeed, informa- 
tive and useful for students beginning serious study of English 
literature. 

Transactions of the National Association for the Advancement oj 

Art and its Application to Industry: Liverpool Meeting, 188S. 

London: Oiiice of the Association. 18S8. 

The Association for the Advancement of Art decreed that all the 
papers read at its Congress at Liverpool last year should be 
published in extenso. This was perhaps a good idea. The Trans- 
actions of the first Art Congress would be a monumental volume ; 
nobody would have reason to grumble against the editor, every- 
body would be pleased. .So far good, and there need perhaps no 
more be said ; but in case this amiable policy should be again 
adopted, it may be well to ask whether it were wisely done to 
publish all the papers read at such a function in extenso. In the 
first place, the Presidential Addresses may be set aside as being of 
those of which one would desire to have a permanent record. Not 
that these in this case were wholly worth printing, but rather that 
future generations of Art Congressmen may learn what manner of 
men were in vogue in the year of grace 1SS8. For, thin as some 
of these addresses undoubtedly were, they w'ere by men of the 
time, who represent in their strength and in their weakness the 
art world as it is to-day. For the rest of the papers, many of 
them are abundantly worth permanence ; but many more are of 
those with which one does not care specially to cumber one's 
shelves. When the artist strays out of his own domain, and uses 
the pen instead of the pencil, he sometimes acquits himself dexter- 
ously enough ; but such cases are unfortunately rare. When the 
artist leaves the sure ground of his own experience, and plunges 
into politics, of which he knows little, or metaphysics, of which he 
knows nothing, the audience yawns, and feels disposed to seek 
information on paint from painters, and on other matters otherwise. 
Nevertheless it is interesting to hear what he has to say about his 
art, and, provided he writes of what he knows, nothing is more 
instructive or more likely to receive respectful attention. The 
mellifluous English of the President, and the even more graceful 
periods of Mr. Holman Hunt, have an abiding value as pieces of 
literature, disappointing as at least the first of these is in its lack 
of eveiything but the superficial graces of style. Like the sermon 
of Canon Farrar, indeed, the Address of the President was most 
wofully destitute of any but the most commonplace thinking. 
The appeal in each case was to the ear, and not beyond ; and 
though now and again such an e.xercise as listening to or reading 
such addresses is a harmless recreation, the encouragement of art 
by word of mouth must depend upon more strenuous eloquence. 
Throughout the papers there is a decided want of practical exposi- 
tion. Among the most notable exceptions is Mr. W. B. Richmond's 
paper upon ' A Strict Method for study of the Human Figure,' in 
the painting section, and in a certain degree the paper, full as it 
was of a charming individuality, upon ' Craft Ideals ' by Mr. 
Cobden Sanderson. One of the incidents of the Congress is re- 
called by the paper of Mr. Francis Bate, with its mass of statistics 
and profusion of footnotes. Mr. Bate's paper is really per- 
manently valuable, for it contains in short compass as weighty an 
indictment against the Royal Academy as need be wished for. 
.Some other papers are worth reperusal because of the freshness of 
their point of view. Among these are that by Mr. Hallward, 
painfully egotistic as it is ; that by Professor Patrick Geddes, 
strikingly original, as is all the author's work ; that of Mr. Sedding, 
diffuse and full of irrelevancies as it is ; and that of Mr. William 
Morris, more moderate and persuasive than is usual. 

The Second Congress will meet in Edinburgh in October, and 
will, it is hoped, exceed the first in every way. Open as it is to 
criticism, the Congress fulfils a most useful function, not the least 
important of which is the provision of a common meeting-ground 
where angularities may be readily rubbed down and some compre- 
hensiveness of view acquired. The Congress is certain of a hearty 
welcome to Edinburgh. 



96 THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



TO MY LADY. 

MY Lady's face to me is like a star 
Which shines afar 
To guide my footsteps, and to lead me on 
Till rest be won. 

My Lady's voice is always low and sweet, 

And at her feet 
I learn of Love, of its sweet history 

And mystery. 

True charity beams from my Lady's eyes : 

All harmonies 
Are in her gracious movements ; my delight 

Is in her sight. 

Lovely with all the loveliness of love : 

And far above 
All other women in her lowliness 

And holiness. 

My Lady in her servant's inmost heart 

Is shrined apart ; 
God hears her name, her blessed name, alway 

Whene'er I pray. 

Once on my lips, but once, she pressed her own, 

My love to crown : 
Lips kissed by Love must utter Love alone. 

Be kissed by none. 

C. Grey. 



DANTE'S DREAM. 

' lo sono a pi ace.' 

HOW calm she lies, this blessed Beatrice, 
Now Love greets Death with strange un- 
answered kiss ! 
And Dante, yet a joy thou shalt not miss 
E'en though the death-bell sing her soul's release : — 
Yet shall thy spirits brooding pause and cease 
Before the prescience of a joy to be, 
Which she thou lovest wholly may foresee. 
And knowing, seems to say, ' I am at peace.' 

At peace ! the bell tolls to the sullen skies. 
Without, the city lies all desolate. 
With barren ways her feet no more may tread. 
Within, her dumb, shut mouth and lidded eyes 
Hold fast the mystic wonder of thy fate ; — 
Yet peace from her to thee flows perfected. 

Geutrude Dix. 



Ediitbm-^h : T. and A. Coitstable^ Printers to Her Majesty. 



The Scottish Art Review 



Vol. II. 



Edited bv JAMES MAVOR. 

SEPTEMBER 1889. 



No 16. 




B' 



iCNC/\TM these 5un-w'iywifd pinfs aiMdnc fhc, D fy ""oy*" i|oJie,c)uT-vV?ii/-i'5.b vvitK Ki^ leitoir.a 
.wl^rteo^alrtlei.+mp-' shams Ill's luwhfo ttthcr, Arolcn fiom H)r Sfd on'fceV*5^ iva-fy^ «■- 



**A burble sTskin <^ yearns on tliC hio\i blue bU'n. 
Inf wittrs amy rii(^ WfiT Winff sino tootthar. 









I ng rloJei'.ofov^K) <3u)ieS) lik 






H ev loVeasf" with aKnefhyih; 



OfJ 



a.n.^cs.ai'a&sesill jiOoiTf" fkfwi bloiJluQ. 




e.ve,y 



Whe'e 6.v/, /Tana «,j£^Je«^k?nis -r|ie5lrms<a-5WAlU^L«eu5 li'e sfill_,as m ».')>re.^m eufbjaen- 







VOL. II. 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



MILLET'S PICTURES AT THE PARIS EXHIBITION 1889. 



Jean-Fran^ois Millet, born at Greville 4th October 
1814, died at Barbizon IS75. 



OIL PICTURES. 



513. Nymphe et Satyre. 

514. CEdipe dctachc de I'arbre. 

515. Une tondeuse de moutons. 

516. Le hameau cousin. 

517. Pacage. 

518. Les glaneuses. 

519. Fileuse. 

520. Les tueurs de cochoiis. 



521. Les meules. 

522. Marine. 

523. Un paysan se reposant sur sa 

houe. 

524. Des paysans rapportent :i leur 

habitation un veau nc dans 
les champs. 

525. Un pare a moutons — clairdelune. 



DRAWINGS IN PENCIL, CHALK PASTEL, OR CHARCOAL. 



414. 


La ferme de L'Azdoisiere. 


431- 


Berger et son troupeau. 


4I5' 


La precaution maternelle. 


432- 


Le vigneron. 


416. 


Les soins maternels. 


433' 


La meridienne. 


417. 


Lesporteiises d'eau. 


434- 


La gardeuse d'oies. 


418. 


Etude de femme vue de dos. 


435- 


La plaine. 


419. 


Phcebus et Eoree. 


436. 


L'Angelus. 


420. 


La bergere. 


437- 


La balayeuse. 


421. 


La fuite en Egj^pte. 


433- 


L'enfant malade. 


422. 


Paysanne assise. 


439- 


La bergere. 


423- 


Le bouquet de marguerites. 


440. 


Troupeau de moutons li la lisiere 


424. 


Laveillee. 




d'un bois. 


425- 


La bouillie. 


441. 


Femme menant boire une vache. 


426. 


Chevriere auvergnate. 


442. 


La baratteuse. 


427. 


Berger gardant son troupeau. 


443- 


Le briquet. 


428. 


Le retour au village. 


444. 


Bergeres regardant passer un vol 


429. 


Le semeur. 




d'oies sauv.-iges. 


430 


La fin de la journ^e. 







FROM curiosity, if not from love of art ami of the 
beautiful, many persons who ^•isit the Exhibition 
at Paris will go and see the chalks and the few oil 
pictures of the great peasant-artist which are there on 
view. Alas ! we have only one screen covered by 
some thirty drawings and pastels, and thirteen oil 
pictures, but from these we may form a very good idea 
of his style, and we can imagine even from this small 
collection the mind of the man who helped to form a 
new school of painting in France — in fact who forced 
the Parisians to acknowledge that there was beauty in 
pure Nature and in Nature's children. Not the ideal 
shepherds and shepherdesses of older masters, who 
would have been (had the spirit of life been breathed 
into them) the first to run away from their sheep-dog 
if not fi'om their sheep, and who besides were quite 
incapable of soiling their dainty hands, or allowing 
winter storms to spoil their airy garments and their 
coquettish hats. 

Millet's life is too well known to us to need repetition ; 
his heroic patience and determination have borne fruit, 
though he can no longer witness it ; he has helped 
on future true artists, because he was true to his own 
ideal, and the result has been, as the result of all great 
work must be, that the master's hand has laid a new 
stepping-stone in the stream of time, a stepping-stone 
calculated to bring us nearer to the land of true beauty. 

One cannot help smiling as one sees the eager 
bourgeois hurrying up to the Millet screen, and asking 
with bated breath for Millet's ' Angelus.' The passive 
gardicn points out a small chalk Angelus and saj's, 



' Voila "L'Angelus." ' The bourgeois' countenance falls, 
he fancies this is the famous picture for which has just 
been paid £23,000, and he draws back horror-stricken. 
That small dark thing with two almost straight figures, 
who are dressed in ordinary clothing, that ' the Angelus,' 
— impossible ! Neither is he much comforted when told 
that it is a pastel copy or replica, and that the original 
is not very much bigger. He goes away discomfited, 
and will not even cast a look on the thirty other 
drawings which hang together on this screen. And yet 
each of these bold, vigorous drawings repays careful 
study ; slight as they are as to execution, they bear 
many of them the impress of a genius which was 
inborn, and which was but little improved by the 
teaching of a master. Millet's teacher had been 
Nature herself; with the sweat of his brow he had 
made the Earth yield not only her material good, but 
the mysterious wisdom which she imparts only to those 
who have the eyes to see her wonders, and the ear to 
hear her mysteries. 

Look at ' The Man Sowing ' ; it is so simple in execu- 
tion. And yet this sower goes out to sow, and for hira, 
as for the man in the parable, the seed falls not 
always on good soil, but upon various ground, in 
spite of that beautiful, regular rhythmical motion of his 
hand which only practice can give. Millet had often 
sowed his father's fields ; he knew better than the 
Parisian, who laughed at him as a rustic, the bend of 
the man's body as he walks along and the pose of the 
hand that scatters the good seed. 

Look closely at ' The Peasant Woman Sewing.' It is 
worth coming to Paris if only to see this. She is 
seated by her child, who sleeps in his cradle. She is a 
mere peasant, with no thought of a Paris ateher or of 
posing to an artist. Her earnest face tells you exactly 
her simple thoughts : she wishes to finish her work 
whilst her child sleeps and before her husband comes 
home. The light is placed above her, and throws a 
charming semicircle of radiance around her. Her 
' marmotte,' or peasant's kerchief, bound tightly round 
her head, is such as she daily puts on, for Millet knew 
better than to give it a Parisian twist ! This perfect 
sketch is only in charcoal, and the lines are not hidden. 
Millet, with true instinct, recognised in his sketches 
that it matters not at all how slightly an artist's 
thoughts are expressed so that the thought and its ex- 
pression be there. If after seeing these sketches you 
walk across to the building of ' Les Arts Liberaux,' you 
will find hundreds of elaborate drawings from the cast 
and from life done by youths in the French art schools, 
but you will not find this simple peasant keeping 
her vigil by her child's cradle, and you will not discover 
there one sketch with all the strength and the poetry 
of life expressed with so little work ; in fact, you will 
find nothing like it at all. 



MILLETS PICTURES AT THE PARIS EXHIBITION 1889 



99 



Close by is another sketch of a woman tasting the 
soup before giving it to the baby on her lap. Again 
the same severe simplicity ; the surroundings few and 
simple : the bed with its large curtains, the cot from 
which she has just taken her child, and the cat looking 
into the fire, which smoulders on the great hearth ; but 
the whole is an id3'l. 

All these sketches are mostly connected with the life 
of the peasant : here, a woman leading her cow to water, 
— poor and meagre are the peasant and the cow, and 
seem to share the same life ; here, sheep browsing, and 
you see the solitude of the moor ; there again, a labourer 
resting. His sabots are thrown off, and remain close by 
him ; his hoe is by his side, and the man himself is ugly. 
So he was in life, and Millet was not going to lie ! 

Millet loved the silly sheep with that shepherd's 
love which evokes admiration even from the men who 
know so little about sheep that they could not draw 
one to save their lives. All Millet's sheep and 
shepherds are delightful. 

Notice the drawing hung here of the shepherd with 
his sheep. He has a big cloak, and leans on a stick in 
meditation. There is a cloud in tlie clear sky, and all 
around is the plain ; the intense silence and lone- 
liness is seen and felt in a reinarkable manner. 
Millet could convey to perfection, even in chalks or 
rough charcoal, that feeling of evening with the light 
falling over the plain and the moon rising. Here we 
have yet another shepherd wrapped in his big cloak 
and accompanied by his faithful sheep-dog. In this 
one the shepherd is gazing at the distant country, 
where some ploughing is being done. Who knows but 
that he too may be a born artist, and sees more than 
we can in the landscape .' 

Millet could express great richness even with his few 
strokes and his simple pastels. On this screen there 
is a woman sweeping, which is very good in tone. 
She has a red-brown jacket, a yellow 'marmotte,' and 
her face is rich in colour, quite sunburnt, — doubtless 
she has been working in the fields, and has come home 
late to tidy up a little. 

But though peasants were often picturesque, and 
Millet put them down as he saw them at such times, 
yet often peasant life is by no meaus a thing of beauty. 
Look at the man and woman asleep on corn. The man 
has flung himself down after hard work in the corn- 
field, and has not disposed his limbs to suit the artist ; 
the woman, because she is a woman, has a shade more 
poetry in her pose, but only a shade. Two scythes lie 
by them. Here we see depicted the hard life of the 
field, the rough strength that gathers in the food for 
those who, unthinking of labour, live in luxury. 

Millet did well to give us the rough as well as the 
smooth ; he pointed a lesson which many refuse to 
learn, but with peasant doggedness he went on, and 
nothing stopped him. He had a message to deliver, 
and he would deliver it. 

As we gazed at this picture two town weaklings from 
the Boulevards, a man and a woman, came up. The 



man had a true idea. ' Joli 9a,' said he, recognising 
some higher thought of his own perhaps, but his com- 
panion hurried him off: ' Non, non, pas joli du tout, 
viens done' 

' The Flight into Egypt' is one of the most delightful 
of these drawings. It is moonlight, and all black and 
white, which we prefer to slight colour mixed with 
black. Millet knew that the Bible spoke the truth, 
and that the Virgin and St. .Joseph were peasants and 
not highly nurtured citizens in peasant gamients. The 
Virgin, as she clasps her child, is here in truth the 
trusting mother, whose faith is unbounded, and who 
obeyed without a murmur. M. Rouart, who is the 
owner of this picture, is much to be envied. 

But we must not linger longer over these drawings, 
though several more deserve notice. The'Angelus' 
is too well known from prints to need description. 
Every one has seen those two figures. The man in 
silent worship bows his head ; the woman, more ecstatic, 
bends lower as she hears the Angelus bell, and repeats 
her ' Ave Maria.' The evening sky is clear behind 
them ; there is the valley in the distance, and the 
church tower ; a rose-tinted cloud floats above the blue, 
— all else is dark and still. There is a fork stuck in the 
ground, and the wheelbarrow stands beside them with 
the half-filled sack of potatoes in it. We remember, 
as we gaze at this picture, how Millet asked his friend, 
'What do you think of it ? ' 'It is the Angelus," 
was the prompt answer, and Millet was satisfied. ' You 
can hear the bells,' he said ; ' I am content.' 

We must leave the drawings and pass on to the few 
pictures which we find in the Exhibition. The largest 
of the thirteen oil-paintings is ' A Woman Shearing a 
Sheep.' From this we can fully appreciate Millet's 
power as a coloui-ist. It was done during his best 
period, and exhibited in 1853. We recognise at once 
that the great artist had the marvellous eye for pure 
colour as well as a very rare insight into the perfect 
harmony which the atmosphere imparts to the whole 
of nature. Here we see perfect nature and perfect 
art ; besides all this, the pathos of dumb speech, with- 
out which even a pei-fect colourist and a perfect 
draughtsman cannot touch our hearts. It is the 
sublimity of thought which was strong in this man, 
and which cannot be explained to those who are deaf 
and dumb to the highest aspirations of humanity. 
The meek creature has been laid on his side ; the 
lamb before his shearer is dumb ; but his shearer is a 
maiden who does her work with that innate sympathy 
which makes the woman, and which is well expressed 
in this girl's face. Half the business is done, and the 
curling wool lies close by. The woman holds the 
shears, and continues her work patientlj', calmly. She 
wears a white cap, blue apron, rich brown bodice, above 
which the white chemise just shows; she has put on a 
pair of sleeves to do her work in. The shepherd is 
close by, but quite in shade ; he holds the sheep's legs 
whilst the girl places one hand firmly on the animal, 
and cuts with the other. A blue kerchief is half out 



100 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



her pocket, and the background is of a rich dark 
brown. Looking well into the shade, we note that the 
shepherd looks at the girl, not at the sheep ; but she is 
quite unconscious of this, though she is young and 
nice-looking. It is impossible to describe the glowing 
richness of the whole picture, and the sense of strength 
it gives us. 

Another homestead scene is hung on the opposite 
side of the room. Two men are bringing home on a 
rude stretcher a newly-born calf; the mother is close 
behind, licking her young one, and two women follow. 
This smaller picture is full of Millet's pathos, yet when 
it appeared in the Salon of 1864 it was severely 
criticised. What did that matter.' The artist had 
seen this picture just as he represented it. They 
blamed him for making the scene so solemn — ' the men 
looked as if they were carrying the Host,' said they ; 
and Millet defended himself with common -sense 
remarks about weight and keeping step, but at the 
bottom of his heart he too knew that the little calf 
was in truth almost an object of veneration in his own 
peasant's home ; he knew all the hopes and fears con- 
nected with the birth of the calf, and above all, he 
knew that none of the joys and sorrows of the peasant's 
life are unworthy of being immortalised. How was he 
to make the Boulevardiers understand this ? 

Then come the famous 'Three Gleaners.' The 
exquisite colouring, the glow of the summer sun, the 
music of motion and the glory of labour are here all 
expressed in the grandest and simplest way. Two of 
the figures stoop low, one is just rising; they wear 
blue, red, and yellow caps ; in the distance the corn 
is being carried and stacked. There is a man on 
horseback surveying the scene ; it is doubtless tlie 
master ; he has remembered the Biblical command to 
allow the poor to glean. The background is soft and 
distant, the three figures alone force themselves on 
the eye and remain there, a very rhythm of summer 
motion, three field flowers that will not fade. 

The next picture is one of stern reality — ' The Man 
with a Hoe resting a few Moments.' This labourer is 
painted in one of Millet's most truthful moods. You 
can fancy him saying, ' Here is this common labourer, 
and you shall look at him just as he is.' His face is 
red, more than sunburnt ; his white jacket is mellow 
with the wear and dirt of labour ; his blue trousers are 
of a picturesque colour, but every line says, ' By the 
sweat of thy brow shalt thou conquer this stubborn 
earth.' In the misty distance women are burning the 
weeds he has dug up. This picture too got Millet 
some hard words. And what was his reply ? ' Some 
tell me I deny the charms of the country. I find much 
more than charms, I find infinite glories.' 

Near to this is a picture which, truthful as it is, gives 
us not much pleasure. Two men are tugging at an 



obstinate pig ; one man leans on its back pushing it ; 
but even here the one touch of tender life comes in, 
for a woman is trying gentler means, and by bribing 
the animal with food from a bucket hopes to conquer 
its will, and to hurry it on to its death. 

Further on is an exquisite gem, ' A Woman at her 
Wheel.' She wears a green-blue marmotte, red bodice, 
green-white apron. The blending of the colours is, 
as usual in Millet's best work, perfect. A basket con- 
taining cotton is by her side. 

There are two oil pictures here belonging to Millet's 
earlier style — ' CEdipus being taken from the Tree,' 
and ' A Woman seen from behind lying on a Bed.' Both 
are i-ich in colour and powerful in drawing ; but had 
Millet never progressed further in the higher and 
nobler region of imagination, no picture of his would 
now have sold for £23,000. 

Leaving out three landscapes, we must notice one 
last picture. It is a night scene : a sheep-park ; the 
sheep are crowding together ; there is a moon rising ; 
you can see three parts of her disc, of a reddish tint ; 
the mist also is rising a little way off, and all the 
poetry of the scene is depicted in such a manner as 
makes us marvel at the man, because we cannot 
account for such a great result with so little apparent 
labour. 

And thus, wishing for more time to study Millet's 
pictures, we turn away, glad that the people of 1889 
should look upon these few masterpieces, which may 
perhaps lead them to turn to the painter's life, and see 
how he fought against difficulties and kept true to his 
ideal, — how he fought and conquered. 

We must quote again Fromentin's words about Mil- 
let to show those who do not yet know his works what 
they may expect to find : — 

' He is a profound thinker compared with Paul 
Potter and Cuyp ; he is a sympathetic dreamer com- 
pared with Terburg and Metsu ; he has something 
incontestably noble when we think of the trivialities 
of Steen, Ostade, and Brouwer. As a man, he puts 
them all to the blush ; as a painter, is he their equal ? ' 
Time alone answers such questions ; but even now 
we recognise that Jean-Fran9ois Millet was great in all 
that is noblest in greatness : he was true to himself, 
and posterity will recognise this, even though it will 
place him below some of the old masters whom he 
loved so truly that he would stand and gaze upon their 
works without venturing to copy them. He knew 
genius cannot be copied. 

The genius in Millet, which was truly his own, and 
not the echo of another's, rejected imitation and 
asserted itself in its own manner, as all true genius does. 
But alas ! genius is rare, and so is its recognition. 

EsME Stuart. 



^SGRAFFITO 



101 



SGRAFFITO. 



n^T"OW that the decoration of the walls of our public 
_L 1 edifices is again being called for, and when the 
sweet simplicity of whitewash is no longer deemed the 
highest form of mental or moral culture, it is perhaps 
worth while to revert to one of the earliest and 
simplest processes of decoration that has ever existed. 
It possesses two great merits : it is fairly permanent 
and it is not costly, merits of much value in these da3's, 
and which have the great advantages of rendering it 
possible to do something good when the best possible 
cannot be afforded, or perhaps is not needed. Its mode 
of execution is so easy that it was performed by that 
mythical being ' the untutored savage,' and 'sgraffito, 
or scratched work, was the very earliest effort man 
made to elevate himself into a decorative artist. Our 
amphibious ancestors, those lacustrine forefathers of 
ours of whom we know so little, scratched what little 
of their history we do know on the bones from which 
they had previously picked a meal, and, wiser than we, 
took care to secure their livelihood before they did 
their work. When man ventured from the water and 
took to the woods, he scratched his legends on the 
bark of the trees ; and when a little later on he com- 
menced business as an art manufacturer, his sun-dried 
pottery exhibited, by means of 'sgraffito, his yearning 
for ornamental art and his desire to surpass his 
neighbour. Soon he perceived that by using either 
naturally stratified materials, or artificially producing 
these in varied colours, he added an additional charm 
to his work, and that is how 'sgraffito registered itself 
as a decorative process. Its highest development is the 
art of cameo- cutting, its simplest laying one coat of 
light-coloured plaster on a darker one and cutting 
through the upper surface before it is quite dry. 

I said it is fairly permanent, by which I mean it will 
last as long as the plaster will ; nor can the highest 
form of mural painting do more. Of course it is not 
so high a form of decoration as mural painting, 
consequently has been less cared for and conserved, 
and this perhaps is the reason why we have so little 
record of its existence between the work of the 
earliest and the latest periods of antique art. That it 
was used in Greek and Roman art I have no doubt ; 
in fact the revivification of the art in the latter years 
of the fifteenth century proves its classic usage. 

Its re-discovery was in this wise. When about 
1494 Pinturicchio was painting the Papal apartments 
and the Loggia at the Castel Sant' Angelo at Rome 
for Pope Alexander vi., there came to him from the 
little town of Feltri, in the Apennines, a youth, 
one Pietro Lorenzo Luzzi, whom the troubles of war 
drove to Rome in search of the arts of peace. He 
wanted to be a painter, a yearning young people 
suffer from even in these more enlightened da3's ; but 
he, unlike too many of these later sufferers, was con- 



scious that great art was beyond his power, and was 
content to employ and enjoy himself in the pleasant 
byways of ornamental art. Loving such mean things, 
being enthusiastic for them, and being of wise and 
modest disposition, — conscious that the fruit of the 
future must spring from the seed of the past, — he was 
always burrowing into and groping amongst the buried 
monuments and tombs of the ruined cities and villas 
which then strewed the soil of Italy. Indeed, wher- 
ever Time and Ruin had defeated their own end, by 
covering up and so conserving the old frescoes and 
stuccoes from utter decay, there was young Luzzi to be 
found digging and delving in search of new motives 
for design, or re-learning old and forgotten processes of 
decorative art. At Tivoli, at Baite, at Pozzuoli, wher- 
ever a grave or a grotto was to be found, there was he 
found also, and from his grave and grotto haunting 
proclivities he won for himself the name of Morto di 
Feltri, by which he is known in art. By his labours 
he gave the new term ' grotesque ' to the vocabulary of 
design, and created that style which was so extra- 
ordinarily developed in, and became so very marked a 
feature of, the decorative art of the sixteenth century. 
' For although,' says the great art biographer of that 
epoch, dear old Giorgio Vasari, ' it may have been by 
Giovanni di Udine, and by other artists who are now 
distinguishing themselves, that these decorations have 
been brought to their ultimate perfection, yet it is not 
to be forgotten that our first thanks and commenda- 
tions are due to Morto di Feltri, who was the first to 
discover and restore the kind of paintings we call 
grotesque, seeing that they were, for the most part, 
hidden among the subterranean portions of the ruins of 
Rome, whence he brought them.' 

It was ' among these subterranean portions ' that 
Morto di Feltri rediscovered the art of working in 
'sgraffito, or scratched plaster-work. I say re-dis- 
covered, for though there is now no evidence that it 
was practised in classic times, yet the process is so 
simple, so common to the very genesis of art, and the 
modern practice of it so incident upon Morto's re- 
searches, that it is hardly permitted to doubt that it is 
a revived process. Whether Morto practised the new- 
found art in Rome or not I have not been able to trace, 
but he went to Floi-ence, apparently to reveal it to 
Michael Angelo and Lionardo. Almost immediately 
he began to practise it there, taking to himself as 
his pupil and partner Andrea de Cosimo, a pupil of 
Cosimo Rosselli, who afterwards added his new master's 
name to his already compounded one, and lives in art 
under the title of Andrea di Cosimo di Feltrini. 

To him, a kindred spirit and ornamentist born, Morto 
opened out his soul and his secrets, and by these two was 
the practice of ornamenting with 'sgraffito the 'stucco- 
fronted ' houses of Florence first introduced. These 



'SGRAFFITO 



103 



were at first done simply in black and white, burnt 
straw being preferentially used for the colournig- 
matter, as giving a silvery black, and the white was 
toned down by a water-colour tint at finishing, the 
first fa9ade so decorated being the Gondi Palace in 
Borgo Ognissanti. The success of the work was so 
great that others rapidly followed, and many houses 
and palaces on the Lung Arno were so decorated ; but 
the most important work in 'sgraffito was the fa9ade of 
the Lanfredino — Lanfredini Palace, near Santo Spirito 
— which is described by Vasari as being ' exceedingly 
elaborate, and exhibiting a rich variety of ornament in 
fanciful compartments,' and for which some of the 
drawings are yet preserved in the Uffizi in Florence, 
showing that coloured grounds were used, and even 
medallions of fresco-work inserted. Though injured 
in the modern improvements of Florence, photo- 
graphs fortunately exist which preserve the I'elics of 
some which were probably executed by or under the 
direction of Cosimo di Feltrini. The fame of their 
labours soon spread, and Morto was called away to 
Venice to assist Titian and Giorgione in the decoration 
of the Fondaco dei Tedeschi, where he fell a victim to 
the charms of Giorgione's mistress, at grief whereat 
some say Giorgione died. But Nemesis was at hand, 
and fleeing from the exactions of the siren, Morto be- 
came a soldier, and Captain Morto di Feltro fell dead 
on the field of Zara. 

Meanwhile Andrea was steadily prosecuting the art 
in Florence, where he achieved such reputation that 
' nothing was deemed perfect unless he had helped in 
it.' 'Indeed,' says Vasari, whom Andrea had often 
assisted, ' had Andrea been fully aware of the extent 
of his abilities, he might have obtained great riches ; 
but he was content with the means of living and of 
indulging his love for art.' 

The new school thus created naturally brought new 
learners and labourers into it, and amongst these were 
Polidoro Caravaggio and Maturino of Florence, men of 
widely differing ranks in life, for Caravaggio came as 
a labourer to carry the hod, whilst Maturino was a 
scholar and a learned antiquary. Yet in spite of these 
differing circumstances their common love for art, and 
especially for this new-found expression of it, so bridged 
over the chasm that they became the Damon and 
Pythias of artists, and were inseparable in their lives 
and works. Between them they carried back to Rome 
that 'sgraffito-work which Morto had found there, and 
by their labours it rapidly became the vogue. Their 
first work was a house in the Borgo Nuovo, another 
followed at the corner of the Pace, and then came the 
Palazzo Spinelli, which, with that of Baldassino de Sant' 
Agostino, were regarded as the wonders of the time. 
And ' in this branch of art it is indeed certain,' says 
Vasari, ' that none have ever shown equal mastery, nor 
have ever exhibited so much beauty of design, so fine 
a manner, such perfect facility, and such freedom as did 
Polidoro and Maturino.' But then came the sack of 
Rome in 1527, when art and artists fled, and once 



again the art of 'sgraffito fell into desuetude, though it 
lingered in strange places, and ultimately found its 
way into England. 

The wars which devastated Europe in the sixteenth 
and seventeenth centuries, and the political unrest 
which followed them, again consigned 'sgraffito decora- 
tion to oblivion ; nor was it until about 1850 that it 
reappeared in Florence, the city of its renaissance. 
Serious attempts were made to introduce it into 
England, and the back of the science schools at South 
Kensington exhibits some interesting experiments, the 
record of some few successes and of many failures. 

In my own practice as an architect and decorator I 
have during the last fifteen or twenty years used it 
somewhat extensively for both external and internal 
adornment, and most of that which I have done is 
still in perfect condition, even in grimy London. The 
mode adopted has nothing new in it ; in fact, Vasari's 
instruction holds good to this day, excepting that I use 
ordinary available materials, and find the simplest the 
best. The wall is prepared in the ordinary way. A 
rough coating of Portland cement, mixed with three 
times its quantity of good sharp sand, is, for external 
work, laid on and finished with a roughened surface, 
by stubbing it with an old birch besom, leaving it 
barely half an inch from the finished face. For internal 
work the ordinary ' pricking up ' suffices. When this 
is dry a thin coat of selenitic lime, mixed with the de- 
sired colouring-matter for the background, is floated 
over it. This background may be black — bone black 
being used ; red, for which you may use Venetian or 
Indian red, or the ordinary ' purple brown ' of com- 
merce, singly or mixed, to produce any tone you may 
desire; yellow, produced by ochres or umbers; blue, 
by German blue, Antwerp blue, or any of the com- 
moner blues, avoiding cobalt, and these colours you 
may use to almost any degree of intensity or paleness. 
When this coat is nearly drj', you skim over it a very 
thin coat of pure selenitic lime, which dries of a parch- 
ment colour, and generally suffices. If you want a pure 
white, you must use a moderately quick-setting white 
lime, as stiff' as you can work it ; but as each part of 
the country has its own lime, and as each variety of 
lime has its own individual perversity, I can give no 
general direction, and would advise the beginner to 
stick to selenitic, which is always procurable, and, like 
an advertised tea, ' always good alike.' 

You have of course already prepared your cartoon ; 
this is pricked and pounced as for any other transfer 
process, and then, with an old, well-worn, big-bladed 
pocket-knife, for there is no better tool, you cut round 
all the outhnes, and M'ith a flat spatula clear away all 
the thin upper coat, leaving the coloured ground as 
smooth as you can. If your plaster is not quite dry 
enough for the two coats to separate easily, wait a little 
longer ; but not too long, for that is fatal. By the time 
you have cleared out your background the plaster will 
be in a good condition to allow you to cut out the finer 
parts of the design, such as the folds of the draperies. 



PESTALOZZI 



105 



or the finer lines of the faces or of the ornament. 
Use your knife slightly on the slope, and if you want 
to produce half-tones slope it very much ; but as a rule 
the more you avoid half-tones, and the simpler and 
purer your line, the more effective your work will be. 
Recollect above all things you are making a design 
and not a picture, and you must never hesitate, for to 
retouch is impossible. 

Sometimes it may be desirable to gild the back- 
ground, and you can then carve or impress it with any 
design you choose. A few cuts with a knife, the head 
of an ornamented button, a butter stamp, or any simple 
thing is all you need use ; m fact, the process is so 
simple, that the less you trouble yourself about appli- 
ances or tools the better. 

It occasionally happens you want to give some sem- 
blance of pictorial character to your work, when it is 
small in scale and near the eye, and then you can pro- 
ceed as though you were cutting a wood-block. In 
fact you can make the work as fine or as broad as you 
like. The series of the Four Seasons in a porch at 
Maidenhead illustrates this treatment. By cutting out 
your ground-colour in places and plastering it with that 
of another colour you may vary any portion of it j'ou 
desire. You can also wash over certain parts of your 



upper coat with a water-colour if you so desire, combin- 
ing fresco with the 'sgraffito, both of which manners 
are used m the Southport retahh ; but as a rule the 
broader your design, and the simpler your treatment of 
it, the better. 

It will be seen that this process is very available for 
simple architectonic effects ; and for churches, hospi- 
tals, and other places where large surfaces have to be 
covered, it is the least costly process that can be 
adopted. It has also the great advantage of being 
non-absorbent, and it can be washed down at any 
time. At Messrs. Trollope's establishment in London 
there is a specimen which for two years was fixed up 
outside their heating apparatus chimney, exposed to 
all weathers, under the adverse circumstances of rapid 
changes to temperature, and it was naturally en- 
crusted with soot ; — it has simply been washed, and 
jiresents a very fair illustration of how enduring this 
mode of decoration is, and how well fitted for external 
decoration of town buildings. The artist is untram- 
melled by difficulties of execution, but he should bear 
in mind that the more carefully he draws his lines, and 
the simpler he keeps his composition, the more charmed 
with the process he will be, and the better will be the 
effect of his work. Geo. T. Robin.son, F.S.A. 



PESTALOZZI. 

1746-1827. 



As the visitor enters the Grand Hall of Sculpture 
of the Palace of Fine Arts from the Exhibition 
gardens, he is at once struck by a fine marble group 
which stands at the entrance. It represents Pesta- 
lozzi, one of the great benefactors of humanity; 
beside him stand two children, two out of the manj' 
hundreds of poor, houseless, ignorant waifs of society 
whom lie saved from misery, perhaps from crime. 
' Material misery is only too often the result of in- 
tellectual and moral misery, which we must conquer 
by the education of children.' This aphorism of 
the great Swiss philanthropist is engraved on the 
base of the monument which is to be placed on 
the principal jylace of Yverdon (Canton de Vaud), 
where Pestalozzi founded one of the first of the 



OUR PLATES.— The portrait of Carlyle, by Mr. 
Whistler, is too well known to need introduction. 
The picture presented quite unusual difficulties in 
reproduction, and only after repeated trials were we 
able to produce a result bearing a passable resemblance 
to the original. This is owing to the peculiarities in the 
colour scheme, which, admirable as it is, is supremely 
hard to reproduce by chemical or mechanical process. 
It is due to the artist to make this explanation. 

The design ' Te Deum ' : ' The Noble Army of 
Martyrs praise Thee,' by Mr. C. W. Whall. is one of 
vol,. II, 



many schools which have rendered him so justly 
celebrated. 

The group is the work of M. Lanz, a young Swiss 
sculptor of great promise, who has been most de- 
servedl}' rewarded with a premiere medaille. M. Lanz 
lias overcome a great difficulty : Pestalozzi was a 
singularly ugly man, but the sculptor has succeeded 
in masking the want of physical beautj' of his model 
under the intellectual moral beauty which beams m 
the look and expression of the great pedagogue. 
How often does it occur that we forget all the 
physical defects of a man as we gaze at the sort oi 
halo of intellectual beauty and goodness which sui-- 
rounds some faces ! Such is the happy impression M. 
Lanz's ' Pestalozzi ' leaves on our mind. C. N. 

Paris, Angus/ iSSg. 

a series illustrative of the ' Te Deum Laudamus ' 
which that artist has drawn in pencil, and purposes 
publishing at some future time. The designs illus- 
trative of the other passages in the old hymn are of a 
character similar to the example given. Mr. Whall's 
designs for stained glass, exhibited at the Exhibition 
of the Arts and Crafts last year, gave evidence of a 
new departure in decorative religious art. 

' The Centaur,' by Mr. Arthur Lemon, is one of this 
artist's most striking pictures. It was exhibited last 
year at Manchester. 

O 



106 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



VERDI'S OTELLO AT THE LYCEUM. 



VERDI'S latest opera, 0/ello, was first produced at 
Milan in February 1887. Two years and a half 
have elapsed since, during the rehearsals, an Italian 
newspaper announced that ' the whole world was wait- 
ing in speecldess, breathless suspense for the great 
composer's last word, even as the children of Israel 
waited for the tables of the Law at the foot of Mount 
Sinai.' 

The interest excited was, indeed, of an extraordinary 
kind. Already, in Aida, the veteran maestro had 
adopted a style totally at variance with that on which 
his earlier operas were constructed, a style of which, 
up to that time, no Italian opera, unless it were Boito's 
Mc/istqfile (which had a style peculiar to itself), had 
given any suggestion ; and it was rumoured that in Ole/lo 
he had advanced many steps further in the direction 
opened up by Wagner, the direction of what may be 
termed orchestro-declamatory music-drama, as opposed 
to all that went to make up the associations formerly 
attaching to the word opera, and with which the name 
of Verdi had been inextricably bound up. The event 
was exciting to all parties, for the Wagnerians were 
proud in anticipation of the distinguished convert they 
were to welcome to their ranks, while the adherents of 
the Italian school were proudly confident that their 
great representative composer was about to outdo 
Wagner in the eyes of all men, and that on his own 
ground. 

The well-nigh frantic enthusiasm aroused by that 
first performance is still fresh in the minds of those who 
were present. True, there were critics who gave the 
preference to Ai'da ; some people — not a few — there 
were who regretted, and still regret, the Verdi of ' II 
balen ' and ' La donna e mobile.' But the mass of 
votes was in favour of Olcl/o, which, by an overwhelm- 
ing majority, was pronounced to be Verdi's crowning- 
work. 

It has been, for these days, a long time in reaching 
this country. Its production here by the company for 
whom it was written, including the splendid orchestra 
under the conductorship of Signor Faccio, has natur- 
ally been looked forward to as one of the chief events 
of the London musical season, and those who, on the 
.5th of July, went to the Lyceum in expectation of an 
exciting evening were not disappointed. 

Whether or not Olello possess the transcendent 
merits claimed for it by its chief admirers, it is incon- 
testably a work of great dramatic power and great 
musical charm. And, whatever may remain to be said 
of certain features in its performance, it is a fact that 
all concerned in it, — singers, conductor, and orchestra, 
— animated by a like enthusiasm for their task, co- 
operated as one man to give a presentment of the 
opera which, in this respect at least, was well-nigh 
ideal. 



The music, essentially and intensely modern in style 
and feeling, is distinctly non- Wagnerian. By saying 
this it is not intended to assert that Wagner's influence 
has been without eff'ect on V^erdi. No contemporary 
but must be influenced, willingly or unwillingly, by 
such a force ; he can no more escape it than he can 
avoid being affected by the electric or atmospheric 
conditions which surround him. But the special lines 
on which Wagner's operas are constructed have been, 
one might almost say, studiously avoided by Verdi. 
What is known as ' leit-motif finds no place in Ofello. 
It is strange that this should be so, as there are great 
opportunities for it. ' Leit-motif ' may be defined as the 
individuality given to each character, each dominant 
idea, by means of a phrase which is its musical counter- 
part, which may appear in various moods and aspects, 
but is as inseparable from it as physiognomy, as tone 
of \oice, is from the human individual, and whicii, like 
a perfume, has the power of calling up to the mind a 
whole chain of ideas by dint of association. Unskilfully 
handled, this repetition and metamorphosis of themes 
may grow wearisome ; but, as wielded by Wagner, it 
is a great powei', a veritable creative force, for it is a 
new and vivid form of personality. And, in his later 
works, where in the ' roaring loom of Time ' these 
threads of association cross and recross each otiier in a 
maze, which would be bewildering but for the ever- 
increasing power of recognition in the hearer, the web 
of the whole seems to have the complex simplicity of 
Nature itself, that of numberless individualities all 
blending into one universal existence. 

None of all this in Verdi. His modes of expression 
are quite direct and simple, and suitable to the lyric 
stage as it now exists. The only respect in which 
Olello resembles a Wagnerian opera is its continuity. 
The music is declamatory almost throughout ; even 
the great love-duet of tiie first act is a dialogue, and 
forms, as do the other concerted numbers, an integral 
part of the dramatic whole, in which the action is 
uninterrupted by songs or set pieces. The music 
allotted to each character is dramatically and vocally 
suitable ; the orchestra supplies colouring and em- 
phasis, and sometimes comment, but, except in one 
instance, it tells, itself, no story. The exception 
referred to is what, in the critical argot which no 
one can wholly escape from, has come to be known 
as the ' kiss-motive ' ; in other words, the lovely wave 
of yearning melody which accompanies Otello's words 
' Un bacio — un altro bacio — ancora un bacio.' These, 
the concluding words of the opera, — where they are 
the Italian equivalent of the lines 

' I kissed tliee ere I liilled thee. — No way but this, 
Killing myself to die upon a kiss,' 

— are by a happy and beautiful thought of the poet- 



VERDFS OTELLO AT THE LYCEUM 



107 



librettist's, introduced into the fii'st act, at the end of 
the love-duet, so that their recurrence at the close 
becomes a touching reminiscence of the happy days 
when first they were uttered. And the tender musical 
phrase which illustrates them, and which belongs to 
the orchestra alone, naturally recurs when they do, — 
an exquisitely contrived coincidence. 

The book, by the famous lyric poet and composer, 
Arrigo Boito, is of singular merit ; no such good 
libretto has ever been founded on a Shakespearian 
play. Many passages from Shakespeare are rendered 
with surprising fidelity, insomuch that the late Dr. 
Hueffer, on whom devolved the difficult and ungrate- 
ful task of rendering the poem back into English verse 
adapted to the exigencies of the music, found it possible 
to incorporate in his version a considerable number 
of Shakespeare's actual lines. Unfortvmately a still 
larger number are more or less altered by the addition or 
subtraction of syllables, while others, given verbatim, are 
of necessity transposed as to their place in the drama. 
The effect of this cannot but be painful to any lover of 
the original, and a free adaptation in another language 
is more satisfactory to read. The lyrical pieces added 
by Signor Boito are of real poetic beauty, and are 
admirably adapted for their purpose. The play is 
considerably compressed, and Shakespeare's first act, 
with Brabantio's complaint and Othello's appearance 
and self-exculpation before the Senate, which furnished 
Salviiii with the opportunity of so noble and impres- 
sive an entree, is in point of fact omitted, though some 
passages from it are introduced, in narrative form, into 
the next act. The scene is laid at the ' seaport town 
in Cyprus,' and the play opens with the storm at sea, 
during which the vessel arrives which bears the victo- 
rious Otello on his return from the wars. Half the act 
is taken up by some effective choruses of sailors, and 
lago's drinking-song, ' And let the canakin clink,' which 
is grim and weird, rather than rollicking in character, 
especially when unsteadily echoed by the half-drunken 
Cassio. After Otello has quelled the riot which 
ensues, and Desdemona has appeared on the scene, 
the two remain alone, and sing the long love-duet, or 
rather dialogue (for, except in two bars, the voices 
never blend), previously referred to ; and here is 
introduced, in the form of tender mutual remini- 
scence, a good deal of Otello's own account of his 
wooing, belonging to the oi'iginal first act. E.xcept 
for the ' kiss-motive ' at the end, the duet is not very 
striking in theme, and is, perhaps, the most disappoint- 
ing of the important numbers in the opera. It has, 
too, the disadvantage of displaying the weak rather 
than the strong points of the chief singers, for it de- 
mands, to do it justice, a style of vocalisation to which 
the present artists are strangers, and to which it may 
be feared their successors in another genei'ation will 
be stranger still, sustained cantabi/e and sonority of 
mezza voce being where they fail. It is not till the 
second act that they get into their own element, and 
here the excitement of the opera really begins, for the 



interest which centres in lago, as in Faust it centres 
in Mephisto, is enhanced tenfold by the consummate 
genius of the artist. Early in the act he reveals him- 
self to the audience by his impious ' Credo,' a grim 
travesty of the orthodox Credo, a confession, not of 
faith, but of infidelity, fiendishly powerful in effect. 
The orchestral painting of this scene is magnificent 
and new- ; the volley of wind-instrument shakes with 
which it opens has surely no parallel elsewhere. Like 
too many of Signor Verdi's effects, it is short and 
transient, and therefore disappointing ; it never recurs, 
and is not, as it deserves to be, fixed in themind as a 
feature of the opera. 

The scene was superbly declaimed by M. Maurel, 
for whose performance, as actor and singer, no words 
of praise can possibly be too strong. After all, though, 
the most Mephistophelian touch in this truly infernal 
' Credo ' was one not planned by poet or composer, but 
realised (on the first night) by some of the audience, 
when, in response to thunders of ap))lause, lago 
advanced with bows and salutes and repeated it ! 
Why not ? He had just declared his unbelief in 
anything good or great, and this repetition to order 
was, after all, not out of keeping with the spirit of 
the part, — but the dramatic climax was sacrificed past 
recall. 

Immediately upon this follows the dialogue between 
lago and Otello, wherein lago first instils his poison, 
and successfully troubles Otello's peace. M. IVDun-el's 
delivery of the insinuating advice, ' Temete, signor, la 
gelosia,' as he hissed it into the ear of the Moor, was 
a thing to be remembered. But before Otello can say 
much Desdemona returns, all unsuspecting brightness ; 
she is surrounded by women and children, and Cypriot 
and Albanian sailors, who come forward in turn to 
oft'er her flowers and other gifts. The}' sing, at the 
back of the stage, a succession of charming choruses, 
\vhich afford a welcome relief to the prevailing gloomy 
tone of the opera. These choruses are based on 
popular Italian airs, or on quaint, naif tunes closely 
resembling these ; they are very simple, but exquisitely 
melodious, and varied in style and treatment, while 
the ' eornemese ' bass on which one is constructed, and 
the accompaniments to others of mandolines and guitars, 
give them a distinct national character. 

But lago's poison has begun to work, and directlj' 
after this lovely scene follows the quartet, which, 
like the quartet in Rigoletto, consists of two simul- 
taneous duets. Desdemona, who sees that she has 
unwittingly irritated Otello, pleads with him for 
pardon, while lago disputes with Emilia about the 
handkerchief, which, for his own purposes, he finally 
takes from her by force. A short dialogue between 
lago and Otello is followed by Otello's soliloquy, 
' Addio per sempre, sante memorie ' (' Farewell the 
tranquil mind,' etc.), where with keen anguish he 
first realises his poisoned life and shattered hopes. 
This was declaimed by Signor Tamagno with an in- 
tensity of dramatic force the effect of which, alas ! 



108 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



was undone in a moment by its repetition in deference 
to the will of the audience. It seems impossible to 
understand how the artist who could realise such a 
situation could commit such a blunder. Surely the 
sacrifices made by the composer to the continuity of a 
music-drama like this ought to protect it from the 
interruption of encores, which, a mistake in any opera, 
are here as absurd as they are irritating. But the 
enthusiasm of an Italian audience — and on the first 
night the audience was in great part Italian — is not 
to be restrained ; for the moment they were all Otellos 
and lagos, and the pent-up fury of delight, always 
ready to break out in the middle of any effective piece, 
and hushed down with difficulty by a few earnest and 
attentive, but patient, listeners, invariably exploded be- 
fore the end in a thunder of applause, which bid fair to 
carry away the theatre walls, and for which the one and 
only sedative was the repetition of the cause of joy. 

In the third act occurs another long dialogue-duet 
between Otello and Desdemona, where, with good 
intention but incredibly little tact, she harps on the 
subject of Cassio's pardon, and drives Otello to veritable 
madness. Signor Tamagno's acting here, as indeed 
throughout, is very fine. His impersonation differs 
from that of Signor Salviui ; he discards the turban 
which gave to Salvini's appearance a sort of Oriental 
dignity, and he represents altogether a less intellectual 
and a younger Otello than his great predecessor in tlie 
part, but he looks, and is, Shakespeare's Moor to the 
life. We recognise the ' constant, loving, noble nature ' 
ascribed to him even by lago, — affectionate, loyal, and 
credulous, impulsive and uncontrolled, as easily led 
and as readily deceived as a child, with the furious 
passions of a southern man. When, at the end of this 
duet, he has flung Desdemona from the room, and 
staggers back, wrecked and crushed by grief and fury, 
to breathe in broken accents his pathetic soliloquy, 
' Dio ! mi potevi scagliar liitti i mali 
Delia miseria, della vergogna,' 

— gasped at first in a monotone, then, as he recovei's a 
little, in a few broken musical sentences, — the most 
touching point in the whole opera is reached, all hearts 
bleed for him, and if (as is said to have actually hap- 
pened in an Irish theatre) lago on his re-appearance 
had been mobbed by the audience, it would hardly 
have been matter for surprise. 

After this occurs the ' trio of the handkerchief be- 
tween Otello, lago, and Cassio, and then a grand con- 
certed septet and finale by all the leading characters and 
chorus, highly characteristic of Verdi in themes and 
treatment. Here Otello brutally insults his wife before 
the dignitaries of the Venetian Republic, and arouses 
the general horror. His subsequent swoon, when lago, 
planting his foot upon the prostrate body, exclaims in 
malign triumph, ' Ecco il leon ! ' brings down the cur- 
tain on the tableau and the act in a way which is rather 
stagey than dramatic, and which sounds the single false 
■^i.e. un-Shakespearian — note in the whole play. 

The opening of the fourth act is intended to afl^ord a 



beautiful contrast to the furious waves of tragedy which 
have preceded it. The effect of this can never be fully 
appreciated until a Desdemona is found who not only 
is a sympathetic actress, but who has a touching voice, 
and who can sing, in a sense of the word which would 
seem to be becoming old-fashioned. The act opens in 
her bedroom, and the subdued, quiet recitative with 
which it begins, and the plaintive ' Willow Song ' she 
sings to Emilia, are both in their way beautiful, and 
eminently vocal. These, and the simply intoned 
' Ave Maria,' with its subsequent lovely cantilena, 
' Prega per lui, adorando,' afford a golden opportunity 
for a singer and actress of genius. To think what this 
scene might have been in the hands of a Malibran, a 
Jenny Lind, or (to come nearer home) a Christine 
Nilsson, or a Pauline Lucca — nay, what it might be in 
the hands of Madame Albani, is to realise all that it is 
no/. Madame Cataneo did her best, and secured the 
eager attention of the audience. But the constant 
habit of jiienavoce declamation wears out the quality of 
the voice, and leaves little of that tone which gives 
charm to sostenuto singing. At the end of this scene, 
had she followed the stage direction, which tells her 
to remain kneeling while mentally repeating her prayer, 
it would have been better than rising and coming 
forward to bow her acknowledgments to the applause 
of the house. 

The ' Beckmessers ' of all nations will stop their ears 
and chalk up a fearful score against Verdi at the pro- 
gressions in fifths and octaves which are a striking- 
feature in the music of this scene. Indeed these pillars 
of (musical) society will receive from the present work 
many shocks almost as rude as they must have ex- 
])erienced from Verdi's Re(piiem, with which Olello 
has much in common. 

The fateful entry of Otello into his wife's bedroom 
is characterised by a recitative for double basses of a 
strange and suggestive character, already as famous in 
its way as the Morceaii (i 1' iniisson of the Africaine. 
It is difficult, and was, on the first night, not perfectly 
executed — an exception, in this, to the orchestral play- 
ing generally, which was magnificent. 

Otello approaches the bed and kisses the sleeping 
Desdemona three times. Through the orchestra the 
• kiss-theme ' sweeps like the moan'of a passing wind. 
At the third kiss she wakes. From this point to the 
end the dramatic crescendo is rapid and intense. After 
the catastrophe everything didactic is of necessity cut 
out, including even Otello's farewell message to the 
Senate. As suddenly disabused as he was quickly 
deceived, no sooner has his fatal error flashed on him 
than he stabs himself. Then, painfully dragging himself 
up the four steps of the alcove where the bed is, he 
kisses Desdemona's lifeless body once, — the old theme 
is heard blending with his passionate cries of regret and 
remorse, — a second time, — and once more he would, but 
as the last cadence fades away in the orchesti'a he dies, 
and rolls, a corpse, down the four steps to the ground, 
a painfully realistic climax, on which the curtain falls. 



THE WAGNER FESTIVAL AT BAIREUTH. 



109 



Whether Otelto will ever become widely popular^ 
— whether it will ever acquire over any kind of jniblic 
the hold which is still maintained by some of Verdi's 
earlier works, has yet to be seen ; to the present writer 
it appears uncertain. The worst of this play as a 
subject for lyrical treatment is its inevitably sombre 
colouring. Rage^ despaii-, and horror predominate 
almost exclusively in the second and third acts^ and 
in half of the fourth. The mind is kept perpetually 
on the rack of pain, — a dangerous experiment in opera, 
where the sensuous beauty of voices and instruments, 
in forced contrast to the horrors of the theme, make 
the hearer long for a little occasional relief. In the 
days of Mozart, where heroes, heroines, and villains 
all had to sing airs constructed more or less on the 
same pattern, a gloomy subject mattered less; but 
now, when every vocal and instrumental phrase faith- 
fully echoes the passing emotion it accompanies, the 
agony, by the end of such a tragedy as Otello, is 
jjiled up very high indeed. Such relief as is possible 
Boito and Verdi have introduced, principally by means 
of the choruses in the second act, and that without 
any sacrifice of dignity or truth. But it is a work 
which will only be tolerable in the hands of gifted 
artists, of exceptional power and experience. 

Of the singers, as singers, M. Maurel carries off the 
palm. His voice and his vocalisation are alike superb. 
True, he uses the vibrato, and that pretty freely, but 
he uses it with discrimination, and, compared to those 
of his Italian compeers, his notes are as steady as 
rocks. He seems born to enact lago, who in his 
hands becomes the central figure in the play. 

Signer Tamagno's fine voice, remarkable for power 
rather than volume, is of splendid extent, but not alto- 
gether agreeable quality. It has, no doubt, been 
marred by the constant practice of declamation at 
full force, and is fit, now, for nothing else. When he 
is using his high notes in this way he is very fine, but 



when he ought to sing, in the middle of his register, 
and piano, quality is wanting, his tone is poor, nor can 
he then always control his intonation, and nothing but 
his splendid delivery of the words carries him through. 
The same remarks apply to Signora Cataneo, who, with 
smaller powers, has the same defects. She should 
have been a good singer — she is a gifted one — but she 
can only declaim, and her one means of effect or con- 
trast seems to be the detestable vibrato, which, when 
unceasingly used, defeats its own object most effectually. 

No doubt these drawbacks were more palpable than 
they might have been, owing to the fact that the 
Lyceum Theatre was much too small for the Scala com- 
pany. The singers could not modulate their voices 
to suit the little house, and the orchestra was too 
large for it. They would have been heard to far 
greater advantage at Her Majesty's Theatre, which — 
could it but have been foreseen — was standing empty 
when they came. 

By the end of the season they had become more 
accustomed to their locale, and the playing of the 
orchestra, for perfection of execution, for force, fire, 
and delicacy of expression, could not have been sur- 
passed. Signer Faccio richly deserves the gigantic 
wreath of white flowers presented to him on the occa- 
sion of the first performance. 

In conclusion, it must be added that the supreme 
qualities of Italian declamation made themselves appa- 
rent throughout, not only in the principal parts, but 
the secondary ones, all of which were excellently well 
sustained. The accent, the point, the exquisite sense 
of rhythm and balance born in Italians and inherent 
in their language, were here displayed in their highest 
perfection. Rare as these things have become on the 
so-called Italian stage of the present day, they were 
refreshing to hear, and were, in themselves alone, well 
worth a visit to the Lyceum to enjoy. 

Florence A. MARsn.\Li.. 



THE WAGNER FESTIVAL AT BAIREUTH. 



I. 



IT is certainly a wide departure from current ideas 
of social convenience that the most important 
artistic celebration of the day should be held, not in 
London or Paris, in Vienna or New York, but in a 
small Bavarian town, far removed from the main 
thoroughfares, and possessed of no attractions save the 
kindly simplicity of the people and the pleasant char- 
acter of the surrounding country. But the choice of a 
sanctuary is deeply significant of Wagner's message to 
his generation. The power of art, he says, over the 
mainsprings of action is thwarted by the claims of 
material interests. You cannot serve God and 
Mammon. You must cease to look on music and the 
drama as merely a variety of dissipation, an after- 



dinner amusement to while away the leisure of 
frivolous pleasure-seekers or stimulate the jaded 
senses of those who have spent their best hours in 
hasting to be rich. You must learn that art is the 
flower of life, and that it cannot be plucked in an idle 
moment, but must be sought with prayer and fasting. 

Baireuth is the Mecca of those who accept this 
doctrine in the fullest sense, and I now offer the ex- 
perience of one of this year's pilgrims. The import- 
ance I claim for the festival will seem extravagant to 
many, but I decline to be judged in this matter by any 
who have not themselves made the pilgrimage. I am 
afraid I should decline to be judged even by those who 
have made the pilgrimage if their testimony conflicted 



110 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



seriously witli my own. There may be some who have 
come and gone without sharing the enthusiasm of the 
devotees, without being impressed in any memorable 
way by what they have seen and heard, but to sucli I 
have nothing to say. The gulf could not be bridged 
over by any argument. I speak only to those of whom 
there is still hope that they may realise for themselves 
the experience of the vast majority of the pilgrims. 
And here I would urge that it is a mistake to suppose 
that the Baireuth Festival is one which appeals only to 
musical enthusiasts. The power of the Wagnerian 
dramas is not wholly dependent on their musical 
setting. It is possible to be ignorant of the latest de- 
velopments of musical expression, or at least incapable 
of fully understanding and enjoying them, and yet to 
be deeply impressed by the general effect. It is 
indeed just this vastness and complexity of the 
emotional appeal which is the chief revelation to those 
who have the opportunity of experiencing it. The 
degree of appreciation is, of course, dependent on the 
level of culture which each one has attained in the 
several arts which build uj) the total impression ; but 
while no one can hope to exhaust the possibilities of 
influence, there can scarcely be any one who will not 
be strongly moved on one or more sides of his nature. 
If the music fail to heighten the interest it can hardly 
at least detract from it, and there remain all the 
dramatic elements in a convincing form, appealing as 
they do to faculties of a less special kind. Let no one 
therefore be afraid to come to Baireutli. The experi- 
ment cannot be fruitless at the worst, and at the 

best ! 

The most striking feature of my experience has been 
a sense, which I now feel it was impossible to anticipate, 
of the cumulative effect of the various means which 
have been combined to secure the most favourable 
conditions of presentation. I liad of course been pre- 
pared for the special devices of all kinds ; but it is one 
thing to have heard of them, and imagined their effect 
singl}', and quite another thing to realise them in com- 
bination. The extent to which the removal of every 
untoward element contributes to the general emotional 
effect cannot be grasped by any effort of imagination 
or any process of reflection ; it can only be realised by 
direct experience of the senses. To those who fulfil 
the conditions in their entirety the preparation begins 
long before they enter the theatre. The mere distance 
from every ordinary place of resort involves a selective 
principle which is at once chastening and inspiring. 
The sense of effort undertaken in pursuit of an ideal 
introduces something of the spiritual exaltation which 
must have been felt by the crusaders of old, while 
there is all the sympathy belonging to comradeship. 
The whole town is absorbed in the festival, as one 
might fancy Jerusalem to have been at one of the 
annual feasts; there are no distractions^ and all arrange- 
ments are adjusted to what is regarded as the serious 
business of the day. 

Nothing could be further removed from the ordinary 



associations suggested by a London theatre than the 
unpretentious but stately and impressive building, 
situated on the brow of a hill, and separated from the 
town by a fine avenue of trees ; and looking down on 
it from the Siegesthurm one finds it difficult to believe 
that this can really be the shrine of some of the most 
precious treasures of the world's art. But the mind 
becomes gradually attuned to the pervading influences 
of the place through a succession of vivid impressions. 
The continuous stream of people wending their way to 
the theatre, the trumpet-call on an appropriate motif 
summoning them to their places, the vast bank of seats 
where there is no distinction of classes, the instant 
hush when the lights ai'e lowered, the perfect silence 
throughout the act, without even a murmur of applause 
till the curtain closes, — all these influences make for 
that preparation of spirit which is found to be such an 
essential element in the force of the emotional effect. 

The more important conditions of presentation are 
of course no less perfect. The characters are repre- 
sented by the finest actors and singers from all parts 
of Europe; the orchestra of over a hundred performers 
is excellent beyond all description ; the mise-en-schic 
is a marvel of artistic skill, applying all the resources 
of mechanical contrivance; the rehearsal is so complete 
that there is not a suspicion of uncertainty; and above 
all, the whole sum of effects is arranged with a grasp 
of iBSthetic significance which bears witness at every 
point to the directing hand of a great creative artist. 

The special feature of the festival is, of course, the 
performance of the semi-sacred drama of Parsifal, 
which can be heard nowhere but in Baireuth. This 
year, however, there is a strong additional attraction 
in the opportunity of hearing also the two other of 
Wagner's works which are most characteristic of his 
fully developed style, Tristan und Isolde, and Die Meis- 
lersiiiger. The three dramas stand in admirable con- 
trast to each other, affording together not only a rich 
variety of emotional impression, but also valuable 
material forjudging of the success of the composer's 
methods in their application to widely different themes. 
No more convincing evidence could be had of the com- 
prehensiveness of the master's genius, and the reason- 
ableness of his claim to have revealed a new gospel of 
artistic production, than the experience of hearing in 
close succession these three dramas, in all of which the 
atmosphere, the motive, and the forms of construction, 
both dramatic and musical, belong to entirely different 
spheres of intellectual interest and emotional appeal. 

The Meistersinger von Niirnberg forms an admirable 
prelude to the weightier subjects of the other works. 
Its genial portrayal of the mediaeval life of that iiiost 
interesting of German towns has a special charm for 
those of the pilgrims who have just come from wander- 
ing through its quaint old streets and trying to realise 
the spirit of its bygone history ; but it needs no 
familiarity with the scene to enjoy the fine idealism 
with which the love-story of Walther and Eva is 
blended with the sympathetic picture of the civic 



THE OPERA SEASON 



111 



worthies, and the vivid portrait of Hans Sachs, the 
real hero of the drama. Admirably, too, is the true 
spirit of comedy maintained in the lifelike figure of 
Beckmesser, the narrow-minded, fussy, ambitious town- 
clerk, whose vanity leads to a discomfiture that turns 
dislike into laughter. Altogether the work has an 
idyllic beauty of motive, and a variety of interest, 
which, through the medium of effective stage-presen- 
tation and exquisite music, produces an impression of a 
thoroughly distinctive kind. 

Ko less distinctive, but very different in motive, in 
construction, and in effect, is the drama of Tristan nnd 
Isolde. Here, after the fii-st stirring scene on board 
the ship, there is no device of spectacle or variety of 
incident, — nothing that can distract the attention from 
the simple working out of the fate of the unhappy 
lovers who have found that love may be stronger than 
honour, that there is a destiny of nature which they 
are powerless to resist. Apart from the ethical signi- 
ficance of the story, and the universal appeal of its 
interest, the strength of the work lies in the matchless 
beauty and force with which the themes of love and 
grief are represented, alike in the dramatic develop- 
ment and in the musical expression. While others of 
Wagner's works treat of larger ideas, and are concei\'ed 
on a grander scale, there is none that presents a greater 
perfection of form or creates a more unique emotional 
impi-ession. 

Parsifal stands by itself, apart not onlj' from the 
other Wagnerian music-dramas, but from all other 
dramas whatever. It holds this distinctive place 
through the sublimity of the conceptions with which it 
deals, — the themes of sin and repentance, of the con- 
flict of good and evil, of the triumph of pui-ity and 
(li\ ine compassion over tlie powers of darkness. Defer- 
ring criticism of the methods by which this vast 
endeavour is accomplislied, I content myself now with 
bearmg witness to the convincing character of the 
general effect. If the value of a work of art is to be 
measured by its power of suggesting great ideas 
through the medium of sense impressions ; if the wealth 



of sensuous beauty is, as I conceive, an essential ele- 
ment in its success, there can be no question that 
Parsifal must be ranked among the greatest monu- 
ments of art. Every resource of music and of spectacle 
is called into the worthy service of enforcing the 
eternal truths which bound the life of man fi-om the 
cradle to the grave. 

Mention must be made of the artists who have had 
the largest share in securing the success of the present 
festival. In the Meistersitiger the chief characters have 
been most successfully interpreted by Fraulein Malten 
and Herr Gudehus of the Dresden theatre, and Herr 
Reichmann from Munich. In Tristan the chief honours 
fall to Herr Gudehus, to Frau Sucher from Berlin, and 
to Herr Vogl of the Munich Opera House ; while in 
Parsifal the title-role has a most distinguished repre- 
sentative in Herr Van Dyek, a young Belgian singer, 
now resident in Vienna. The part of Kundry has been 
taken by Frau Materna, who has long been known as a 
successful exponent of the Wagnerian tradition, and 
by Fraulein Malten, the first representative of the part, 
who in the matter of stage presence and careful acting- 
has some advantage over the older singer. The success 
of the ensemble is due to the efforts of the able con- 
ductors, Herr Ricliter, Herr Levy, and Herr Mottl, 
and to the general direction of Madame Wagner, the 
master's widow and the daughter of Liszt, with whom 
it is a labour of love to preserve unbroken the tradi- 
tions of performance established by her husband. In 
respect of popularity the present festival has surpassed 
all its predecessors, every performance being crowded, 
and many being unable to get tickets. Next year 
there will be no festival, but it is understood that in 
the following year, along with Parsifal, there will be a 
production of Tannliiiiiser. 

I propose to reserve for another paper some discus- 
sion of the critical questions regarding Wagner's aims 
and methods, which are still subjects of controversy, 
and on which some fresh light is naturally thrown by 
successive experiences of presentation. 

James Oliphant. 



THE OPERA SEASON. 



IT is grim work watching an opera season in London. 
In his stall sits the English gentleman in evening- 
dress, taking on trust his guinea' s-worth of guaranteed 
Mozart or Wagner as ignorantly as a ploughman takes 
Cibber or Garrick on trust as genuine Shakespeare. 
He is walled in with a hotly oppressive crimson pigeon- 
house of private boxes, filled with countless women in 
white, glittering and chattering, shaking diamonds and 
flapping- fans. Over his head is a monstrous chandelier, 
hanging by a huge chain, which may snap, he thinks, 
at any moment ; and clustered about it, on the roof of 
the crimson pigeon-house, swelters a crowd represent- 
ing the general public, at half a crown and five shillings 



a head. On tlie stage an opera tumbles along with 
cuts here and cuts there, the detail of the action 
sometimes slurred, sometimes omitted, never simul- 
taneous with its indication in the orchesti-a ; the 
singers' opportunities for display ai-e strung together 
in no relation more organic than that between the 
fejits in a circus ; and the prompter is working desper- 
ately to make up for insufficient rehearsal and want of 
forethought. This is the ordinary ' subscription night,' 
upon which the subscriber gets for his money the most 
perfunctory Traviata or Trovatore that the management 
can venture upon without loss of prestige or flagrant 
breach of faith. There is little risk at the hands of 



112 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



the critics ; for the standard of excellence is very low ; 
and those who are disposed to screw it up, having once 
exhausted the possible vai-iations on the same com- 
plaint, drop the subject lest they should repeat them- 
selves and seem barren. Besides, a musical critic is 
too busy during the season to pay much attention to 
ordinary subscription-night performances, even were 
liis editor able to spare space. Moreover, the short- 
comings are everybody's fault : that is, nobody's fault. 
If Mr. Augustus Harris were asked why his melo- 
dramas at Drury Lane are so much better done than 
his operas at Covent Garden, he would reply — if his 
startled amour propre did not hide the right answer 
from him — that if he had to put on a different melo- 
drama every night, the shortcomings of Covent Garden 
would immediately appear at Drury Lane. 

The truth of this will be disputed by no one who 
remembers what ' stock company ' acting was. The 
operatic artist of to-day is a ' stock company ' artist. 
He calls himself a primo teiiore or a basso cantcinte 
instead of a juvenile lead or a first old man ; but the 
difference is only technical. Just as the stock actors 
could take any part in their line at short notice by 
learning or recalling the lines, and applying their 
stage habits to the action ; so within one week do the 
Covent Garden artists contrive to get through Loheii- 
griti, La Traiiata, La Soimamhula, Aula, and Le Nozze 
di Figaro. And just as the old stock company per- 
formances as wholes had absolutely no artistic quality, 
and never produced even a momentary illusion except 
on the merest novices ; so these operatic representa- 
tions are ineffective be3'ond endurance by musicians of 
independent and original culture. The public, how- 
ever, is still in its novitiate, and has always resented 
the protests of such critics as Schumann, Berlioz, and 
Wagner, much as a schoolboy resents his father's im- 
patience of the farce and reluctance to wait for the 
harlequinade. Mere protest against inferior work 
never educates the public. The only way to make 
them intolerant of bad work is to shew them better. 
It was the travelling company with its repertoi'y of 
one thoroughly mastered play that drove the stock 
companies from our provincial theatres, not because the 
actors were individually cleverer than the members of 
the stock companies, but because their collective per- 
formance had a completeness and produced an illusion, 
after one experience of which the scratch performances 
of the stock companies could no longer be endured. 
The stock company accordingly vanished before the 
' tour.' The change has been described, by advocates 
of the old-fashioned training, as a triumph of superior 
economic over superior artistic organisation ; but the 
slightest analysis of the economic position will shew 
that the case was exactly the reverse, since the station- 
ary companies saved, without set-off, the travelling 
expenses which were so heavy an item in the cost of 
pi'oduction of the tour. 

This season a remarkable event sounded an alann 
for stock companyism in opera. An Italian company 



came to London with one opera — Verdi's Olello — and 
astonished the frequenters of Covent Garden by the 
force and homogeneity of the impression made by 
its performance. The grip of the drama on the audi- 
ence, the identification of the artists with their parts, 
the precision of execution, the perfect balance of the 
forces in action, produced an effect which, for the first 
time, justified the claims of Italian opera to rank as a 
form of serious drama united to purposeful music. The 
usual romantic explanations of this success were freely 
offered, — Italian aptitude, great artists, La Scala, 
Wagnerian methods and so on ; but thorough prepara- 
tion was the real secret. The belief in Italian aptitude 
for lyric drama is a superstition from the Purilaiii period. 
Ever since opera began to assume a really dramatic 
character the Italian singer has lost his place on the 
stage, and has even come to be recognised as the least 
teachable and intelligent member of his profession. 
In the particular case in question there were three 
parts requiring special artistic excellence for their due 
presentation. One of them was played by M. Maurel, 
a Frenchman, who has repeatedly appeared at Covent 
Garden in leading parts without ever producing a 
tithe of the effect made by his lago at the Lyceum. 
Another, that of Desdemona, was taken by an Italian, 
who was the one failure of the representation : her 
artificial stage business, false pathos, and wavering 
voice being tolerated for the sake of the whole of 
which her performance was the least worthy part. In 
that of Otello himself, there was an Italian, Tamagno, 
undoubtedly a quite exceptional artist, whose voice 
seems to have reached the upper part of the theatre 
with overwhelming power, though to others . some of 
the current descriptions of its volume seemed hyper- 
bolical. His voice, at any rate, had not the pvne 
noble tone, nor the sweetly sensuous, nor even the 
ordinary thick manly quality of the robust tenor : 
it was nasal, shrill, vehement, sometimes fierce, some- 
times plaintive, always peculiar and original. Imita- 
tion of Tamagno has ruined many a tenor, and will pro- 
bably ruin many more ; but the desire to produce such 
an effect as he did with ' Addio, sante memorie ! ' is in- 
telligible to any one who rightly understands the range 
of an Italian tenor's ambition. Yet it was certainly 
not to hear ' Addio, sante memorie ' that the audiences 
filled the Lyceum night after night during the dog- 
days : it was to hear Otello ; and there was always a 
protest against the inevitable encore on the ground of 
interruption to the drama. Faccio, the conductor, 
understands Verdi's music as Richter understands 
Wagner's. He accompanies with perfect judgment, 
as he conducts with perfect authority. Like the Bai- 
reuth conductors, and unlike the Covent Garden ones, 
he had only one opera to think about ; and the result 
was a mastery of it quite as complete as Hermann 
Levi's of Parsifal or Felix Mottl's of Tristan mul Isolde. 
In amplitude and richness of sonority, beauty of tone, 
delicacy of execution, and distinction of style, the 
Milan orchestra might justly have claimed precedence 







J' 






TE DEUM. 
Design by C W. Whali,. 



Scottish Art Review^ September i81 



THE OPERA SEASON 



113 



of Baii-euth if the tasks of tlie two had been at all 
fairly comparable in point of difficulty. 

The Otello enterprise was an enormously expensive 
one : yet we are told that no loss was suffered by the 
managers. There is hope, then, that the blow which 
its artistic success dealt to the subscription-night 
opera of fashion may prove speedily mortal. It 
has already raised the standard of operatic acting. 
Ordinarily, the opera-singer is satisfied if he can catch 
some notion of the incidents which come into his 
own stage business, and of the situations in which he 
himself figures ; and he is usually inoculated with 
some tradition as to certain characters, as, for in- 
stance, that Mephistopheles is a sardonic smiler and 
poseur, Don Giovanni a swaggering libertine. When 
these vague notions modify his conventional atti- 
tudinising to the extent of giving it an air of energy 
and purpose, and even suggesting that he knows the 
story which the opera tells, and is taking some steps 
to make it clear to the audience, he shines out as 
comparatively an actor, and is gravely commended 
by the newspapers in terms which dramatic critics 
reserve for Mr. Irving and Mr. Jefferson, Salvini and 
Coquelin. Thus, at Covent Garden this season, a 
Monsieur F. d' Andrade made an indifferent De Nevers 
and a bad Don Giovanni, but displayed some smartness 
and intelligent interest in his business, and played with 
much natural expression and sincerity as Telramond in 
Lohengiin. He was at first acclaimed as a new his- 
trionic genius. But after Maurel's lago, nothing more 
was said of d' Andrade. Maurel played like a man who 
had read Shakespeare and had conceived an lago with 
which he was thoroughly preoccupied. Having re- 
peated the impersonation for a long period without 
interruption or distraction, he was practised in identi- 
fying himself with it — had got into the skin of it, as 
the phrase goes. He had, too, emancipated himself 
from the prompter, and thus left himself nothing to 
think about but lago. The result was that he made a 
considerable reputation as an actor by the ordinary 
standard, whereas formerly at Covent Garden, where he 
was expected to play Peter the Great, Valentine, 
Telramond, Hoel, and Don Juan within a fortnight, he 
was only an actor by courtesy, and by contrast with 
colleagues who were still more superficial than he. 
Now he is an actor on the same plane as Mr. Edwin 
Booth, and may claim to be one of the notable lagos 
of his time. It is a strong exaggeration to speak of 
him as the best lago on the stage ; for he is demon- 
strative and pretentious to a degree that would hardly 
pass without a smile at the Lyceum in winter ; and the 
raillery of the critic who described his lago as ' two- 
pence coloured ' was not without point. But it was 
none the less a new departure of the most hopeful 
kind in operatic acting. 

At Covent Garden Mr. Harris kept up the reputa- 
tion of his management by the production of some 
newly prepared and carefully rehearsed works. Bizet's 
Pearl Fishers was not worth the trouble. The scale of 

VOL. II. 



the performance was too large ; the staging was 
stupidly unimaginative; and Talazac, the Opera Comique 
tenor, whose former appearance in London at the 
Gaiety Theatre with Miss Van Zandt seemed to be 
quite forgotten, did not interest the public. He 
is now a short, stout man, with an odd air of 
always being in the way on the stage, and no- 
thing attractive in his singing except the power of 
sustaining for a long time a sweet but rather wheezy 
tiiessa voce. Gounod's Romeo e Jiilictle, which followed 
after the usual padding of ordinary subscription-night 
performances, was produced on the ground, artistically 
quite irrelevant, that Madame Patti, having recently 
appeared as Juliette in Paris, had given the opera a 
valuable advertisement. As a ' grand opera ' it has 
never been satisfactory. Its delicate music requires 
an exquisite tenderness of handling which would be 
lost in Covent Garden ; and the great length of the 
work, which, except the fiery third act, is in the same 
vein throughout, makes it tedious in spite of the beauty 
of the music. The Shakespearean original itself seldom 
passes without an occasional yawn ; but if four of the 
acts had been rewritten by Lamartine we should go 
fast asleep over it, though the result would have 
been a perfect literary analogue to Gounod's opera, 
enjoyable only under conditions more favourable to 
contemplative serenity than a fashionable opera-house 
affords. 

A more important event was the production of Die 
Meistersiiiger, or as much of it as there was time for 
between half-past seven and a quarter-past twelve. In 
neither of these sufficiently arduous achievements was 
there any drawback that can justly be laid to the 
charge of the management. The preparation was 
elaborate and thorough, the mounting costly even to 
extravagance. Unfortunately the all-important func- 
tions of the conductor, with whom it lies to make 
much or little of the opportunities provided by mana- 
gerial expenditure, were not quite adequately dis- 
charged. Signor Mancinelli's industry was most 
praiseworthy ; he has his work at heart — which is a 
hundred points in his favour ; and he is fairly com- 
petent for something more than the ordinary work oi 
a conductor of Italian opera. But in dealing with 
works in which violent musical crises have to be mar- 
shalled with vigour and coolness — Les Htiguenots, for 
instance — he loses control ; and he has never suc- 
ceeded in impressing on his ))layers that distinction of 
style which a baud always receives from a fine con- 
ductor. In Die Meistersinger the performance of the 
overture was the worst on record in London ; and 
in the broader and more complex sections throughout 
the instrumental effect was noisy and confused. The 
close comparison with Richter at St. James's Hall 
and Faccio at the Lyceum brought all these shoit- 
comings into mercilessly strong relief. A conductor 
of Richter's calibre would soon win for Covent 
Ciarden the artistic rank which its wealth of artistic 
material renders possible. A strong chief is wanted 

i> 



114 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



there all the more because the string band is largely 
manned by young and very rough players, to whose 
artistic conscience Signor Mancinelli has not been able 
to penetrate. 

The main strength of the company has been, as 
usual, vocal, though there has been no attempt to 
'star' on important occasions. The cleverness of 
Madame Melba and Miss Russell, remarkable in de- 
gree, is commonplace in quality ; and Miss Macintyre, 
though her position is now an assured one, is still too 
young and amateurish to make it possible to predict 
whether she will be developed by her internal artistic 
instinct, or spoiled by her early prima-donnaship. 
Madame Albani's ' heavy lead ' was challenged only 
by Madame Toni Schliiger (from Vienna), who, as 
Valentine, looked like a magnificent woman in deep 
distress, and sang like a great singer who had for the 
moment forgotten how to sing. She certainly made 
her mark ; but it is beyond human wit to say whether 
she failed or succeeded. Though she is a much more 
tragic person than Madame Marie Roze, she never- 
theless resembles her in a curious combination of 
unusual ability and endowment with a sort of helpless 
beauty that disarms criticism of her want of skill. 
The men, on the whole, distinguished themselves 
more than the women. M. Jean de Reske's inbred 
refinement of bearing, the charm of his voice, and 
his occasionally inspired declamation made him an 
ideal Romeo. M. Lassalle's Sachs far surpassed all his 
previous achievements : if Theodor Reichmann could 



only sing the part with Lassalle's voice, we should 
have an ideal Mastersinger. As San Bris in the un- 
fortunate performance of Les Huguenots which brought 
forward Madame Schlager, he made much less effect 
than Edouard de Reske, who played it last year, but 
relinquished it this time to take the part of Marcel, 
which proved too low for his voice, and considerably 
overtaxed his histrionic intelligence. The manage- 
ment was at a loss for a heavy basso more than once, 
the Commendatore in Don Giovanni coming heavily to 
grief in the hands of Signor di Vaschetti, whose failing 
is a propensity to sing startling wrong notes. Mon- 
tariol w as not very interesting as a first tenor ; but he 
was most serviceable as David and Tybalt, concerning 
which some ridicule was tactlessly brought on him by 
repeated announcements that in condescending to such 
parts he was sacrificing his dignity 'to oblige the 
management.' The performance of Romeo e Julielle in 
the original French was the most important step in ad- 
vance made during the season. It pleased everybody ; 
whereas the pei-version of Die Meiiiersinger into Italian 
pleased nobody, except perhaps the lazier members of 
of the chorus. 

Mr. Mapleson's attempt at Her Majesty's to interest 
the public with the old Italian repertory for its own 
sake — he had no artists of special note — was a decisive 
failure. The Baireuth performances pointed the 
moral of this failure, and drove home the lesson of the 
Lyceum. 

G. Bernard Shaw. 



RECENT ARCHITECTUIIE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND. 



I. 



GOVAN AND BARONY CHURCHES. 



IT is a healthy feature of the undoubted growth of 
art in Scotland that the new life is not confined 
to any one branch. Architecture, painting, sculpture, 
and the minor decorative arts, all show abundant 
evidence of fresh inspiration and earnest endeavour 
among artists, as well as an increase in number and 
enthusiasm of those who can appreciate good work. 
That this is so with regard to architecture need not be a 
matter of conjecture merely. Glasgow and the west of 
Scotland, owing to progress in wealth and population, 
afford a constant field for building operations; in one 
or other direction the soil is being broken up without 
intermission, and the stone-mason and carpenter are 
never at rest giving shape to our architects' concep- 
tions, ecclesiastical, domestic, civic, and commercial. 
Are these churches, houses, offices, etc., from an 
artistic as well as a practical point of view, better in 
the aggregate than those that have preceded them, 
and whose place in many cases they are taking .? 
and above all are there to be found among them 
individual edifices (for genius is ever a rare commodity) 



worthj' to be ranked with those historic buildings 
which have come down to us from a period when 
ugliness was not ? If such are to be found — and, bold 
as the statement ma}' seem, we are pre])ared to make 
it — it is evident beyond question that ai-chitecture is 
abreast if not in advance of the other arts in the 
revival at present going on in Scotland. It is doubt- 
less an opinion calculated to shock the lover of anti- 
quit}' that some of our modern churches may be ranked 
in the same category as the ecclesiastical remains of 
the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries ; but, making 
allowance for the increased cost and necessary economy 
of skilled manual labour along with the lack of artistic 
powers in the woi'kman of the present day, and the 
advantage conferred by age upon the earlier archi- 
tecture (no building looking its best till a century at 
least has passed over it), — considering each edifice, in 
short, simply as an architectural design in the concrete, 
we are prepared to designate not a few buildings 
erected within recent years worthy to occupy a fore- 
most rank among the architectural treasures of the 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



115 



country. Not, be it said in haste, that all the build- 
ings to be described in the present series of articles 
are of the first rank, and better than anything that 
has been done before, but that all of them, notwith- 
standing the limitations under wliich the architect, 
now more than ever, has to woi'k, are of ai'tistic merit 
raising them far beyond the ordinary standard, and, 
with regard to the ecclesiastical work of some of the 
architects in this part of the country, that it is better 



subsequent paper) ; and the third the Barony Parish 
Church, by Messrs. John Burnet, Son, & Campbell 
of the same city, all situated within the bounds of 
greater Glasgow. The beauty of the Govan Church 
is much lost to the public owing to the seclusion of 
its site, the old churchyard in which it is placed being 
itself hemmed in by tall blocks of dwelling-houses. 
In style it is of the first period of Gothic, known 
generally as Early English, l)ut based upon its develop- 



rif 







I ^^'U,. 






f^..^ 




J K 



-^■^' I^Sfe^-^^- 



t Iff lfe:^,^^5^*ff ^'^ 



tlian anything we have done for centuries, and worthy 
to take its place along with the productions of the 
period when ecclesiastical art last flourished in Scot- 
land. Nor is it to be understood that the three 
churches selected meanwhile for illustration are the 
only ones ; they are but taken as the most recent 
and best of their class, in which are to be found other 
earlier examples of almost equal merit. 

The first of our three churches in point of date is 
the Govan Parish Church, by Dr. Rowand Anderson 
of Edinburgh ; the second Hyndland Church, by Mr. 
William Lieper of Glasgow (to be dealt with in a 



ment in Scotland ; in material it is of a warm grey 
sandstone, with green slate roofs and red tile ridges. 
The main gable, facing south, is simple in motive and 
simply treated, perhaps too much so for so large a 
church. Three lancet windows, the centre one much 
higher than those at the sides, are set back from the 
wall-face by a single flat splay, with a continuous label 
moulding carried round the arch of each, and thence 
across the front to the buttresses. The smaller win- 
dows are surmounted by flat trefoil panels, while the 
topmost part of the gable is enriched with a niche 
flanked by two ciiujue-foil panels. Buttresses, with 



116 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



niches in the upper part^ and with a double intake, 
support the fa9ade to front and sides. Below the 
windows a broad band of carving extends across the 
whole front. Unfortunately this feature, which would 
have given richness to an otherwise too plain eleva- 
tion, has not yet been executed. Below this again is 
a triple arcade carried on shafting with moulded caps, 
the two side ones containing coupled pointed windows 
surmounted by a vesica, while in the centre one is 



octagonal turrets with high pointed stone roofs; on 
either side project the transepts, while further to tlie 
west stands the morning chapel, which likewise pro- 
jects its gable to the back. The choir is lighted by a 
large circular window, with three narrow lancet win- 
dows underneath, the smaller one in the centre, an 
arrangement evidently borrowed from the Abbey of 
Pluscardine. In the interior we find a broad nave with 
narrow aisles serving as passages ; to the west the main 




placed the main door. To the east side a low and 
unpierced aisle is surmounted by a row of simple 
pointed clerestory windows with buttresses between^ 
crowned with a corbelled cornice. The chancel roof 
is lower than that of the nave, and from it projects to 
the level of the aisles a double transept, pierced in 
each gable with a circular cusped window, with three 
small lancet windows near the ground. To the west a 
similar transept projects fi-om the nave, to the front of 
which rise the vestries and a small gallery or porch, 
forming the connection between the church and the 
yet unbuilt spire. The choir gable is flanked bv two 



transept, in which^ and also over the vestibule at the 
back of the nave, are placed galleries. The choir is 
lower and narrower than the nave, its transepts before 
mentioned are occupied on the one side by the organ, 
on the other by a small chapel which again communi- 
cates by an open arcade with round arches with the 
morning chapel in which the daily services are held. 
The walls throughout are lined with red bricks with 
bands of stone intervening. A row of five arches opens 
from nave to aisles ; the piers are octagonal and without 
capitals, the arches themselves simplj' treated in two 
orders, the upper moulded, the lower splayed. The 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



117 



inner face of each pier is occupied by a triple shaft, 
« liich runs up tlirougli the clerestory wall to carry the 
roof principals. The bays thus formed are relieved 
by a gracefully designed triple arcade, the centre and 
higher arches of which contain the clerestory windows; 
where the transept intervenes, however, two arches 
are carried up the full height of the wall, a clustered 
shaft taking the place of the octagonal pier. The 
great arch between nave and choir is very simply 
moulded, a triple shaft forming the jambs ; on either 



example of modern Gothic work, and full of the repose 
which should characterise ecclesiastical art. 

As regards the general arrangement of the church 
itself, the Barony is not unlike Govan, but when taken 
along with the important group of buildings of which 
it forms a part, and for the picturesque arrangement of 
which the natural advantages of the site have been 
ably taken advantage of, the general effect is entirely 
different ; our impression is not so much that of a 
modern Presbyterian church, as of a group of monastic 














1 'isB.Vfy 



side are smaller arches opening from the nave to the 
choir transepts. The nave has an open timber roof, in 
the upper part plastered between the rafters ; that of 
the choir is barrel vaulted, panelled, and lined with 
wood. Separating the choir from the chapels on either 
side are delicately designed wrought -iron screens, 
while the wall behind the communion table is enriclied 
with a stone arcade with capitals, spandrils, and cornice 
richly carved. The pulpit, reading-desks, choir stalls, 
and communion table are examples of refined artistic 
design, and are beautifully executed in oak. Refine- 
ment and dignity indeed form the key-notes of the 
whole design. There is little or no exuberance of fancy 
displayed ; severity is in places barely saved from bald- 
ness ; but it is altogether a beautiful and successfid 



buildings restored. The style, too, is the same, but 
treated with greater boldness, producing a correspond- 
ing increase of light and shade. The material is here 
red sandstone, and the roofs are slated. When seen 
from the north-east, from which the best general view 
is obtained, the foreground is occupied by the low 
buildings used for committee-rooms, halls, etc., with 
unbroken roof-lines stretching along Cathedral Square 
and up the street at right angles to it. At this end, 
and forming an effective finish to the group, is placed 
the church-officer's house, the corbie-stepped gables 
and stone dormers, well-known features of old Scottish 
work, giving it a natural domestic feeling. At the 
other angle, where these buildings join the church, is 
situated the session-house, witii an octagonal end. 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



119 



buttresses on the angles, anil pierced with a triple lancet 
on each face. Behind these low buildings rises the lofty 
choir gable with its three long lancet windows, deeply 
splayed, and over them a corbelled-out gallery connect- 
ing the buttresses ; at right angles to it, and facing the 
square, is the transept gable, with two similar windows, 
separated by a buttress and surmounted by a vesica, 
while from the crossing rises a wooden fleche some 
sixty feet in height. Thence southward runs the nave 



and here also surmounted by a vesica moulded and 
carved with a leaf ornament. The bvittresses to the 
front rise almost the full height of the gable without 
break, and are sloped outwards, a somewhat novel but 
natural treatment of this feature. Beneath is placed 
the main door, perhaps too finely moulded to corre- 
spond in scale with the rest of the front, flanked by 
two small flying buttresses, which help to give the door 
depth and importance, if rather unmeaning from a 







with single pointed windows, separated by buttresses, 
and beneath, a low aisle, with lean-to roof and small 
pointed windows in pairs. In the angle between nave 
and transept is placed the lateral porch, an important 
feature in the elevation to the Square. A flight of steps 
passes under an open archway, richly moulded, but with 
simply splayed jambs, the innermost order, carried 
on shafting, being of trefoil form. Above rises a squat 
gable flanked by a stone-roofed turret, while to the side 
the porch is lighted by short pointed windows, con- 
nected by a rich arcade. The nave gable, facing south, 
is pierced by three lofty lancet windows deeply splayed. 



constructional point of view. Beyond these again are 
small pointed windows to light the vestibule. In this 
front we have again a reminiscence of a well-known 
example of Scottish ecclesiastical architecture, the 
Cathedral of Dunblane. In the interior the nave arches, 
five on each side, are carried on thick circular pillars 
without capitals, with the exception of the double 
openings to the transept, where the pillar is shafted 
and has a moulded capital. On the face of the piers 
are small engaged shafts rising through the clerestory 
wall, otherwise perfectly plain, to carry the main trusses 
of the roof, which isof timber throughout, with massive 



120 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



tie-beams. The whole design of tlie nave is exceedingly 
simple and dignified, its great height, the beauty of 
its proportions, and the 
warm colour of the red 
stone saving it from 
that appearance of bare- 
ness which simplicity 
is apt to engender, 
while it offers a fine 
contrast to the richness 
of the choir or chancel 
which architecturally 
and ecclesiastically 
forms the natm'al focus 
of the church. The 
choir is of the same 
height as the nave, on 
which it opens through 
an arch of lofty propor- 
tions richly moulded 
and shafted. Within, 
the piers and wall 
spaces between the win- 
dows are also shafted, 
and the capitals foliated. 
Above the side arches 
the wall is panelled to 
receive mosaics, while 
above these again rise 
the clerestory windows. 
The choir is flanked on 
one side by the organ 

loft, on the other by a chapel, this again giving access 
to the vestry by three arches filled in with glazed 







- ©e^i^a 







screens. At one side of the choir arch is the pulpit, a 
circular drum from which springs an octagon, the whole 

in red stone with flush 
mouldings in green sei'- 
pentine, and a heavy 
alabaster cope. The 
reading-desk is of cop- 
per : from a square 
base, with figures in low 
relief, rises a thick cir- 
cular shaft with foli- 
ated band and pierced 
cushion cap, on which 
rests the copper desk 
with low relief orna- 
ment on its under side. 
The font is also intei- 
esting, in alabaster and 
green serpentine with 
copper bowl. The wood- 
work in the choir, while 
original in design, is 
rather out of keeping 
with the richness of this 
part of the church ow- 
ing to its simplicity and 
the roughness of its exe- 
cution. Of the interior 
of the smaller buildings 
it must suffice to say 
that while simple as be- 
fits their purpose, they 
lire picturesque, and thoroughly ecclesiastical in feeling. 
(To be continued.) 



mmmmm 




^. 



I • \ 







// i.... 

'"'.'^in'.'i:.'(:i(aii(iiw"'' 

'^klillfii/,'' ■ {#!€ /j: , 




A RUN WITH THE SYDNEY HOUNDS 



121 



A RUN WITH THE SYDNEY HOUNDS. 



AN April sun was rising when I leapt on Dexter's 
back, 
And for Parramatta township turned his head. 
With but half an hour to do it in I took the timber track. 
Faith ! the chilly morn had kept nie long in bed. 

I knew the stuff beneath me, so we cantered fresh and 
free. 
Taking all the fences kindly as we strode 
Over Greystanes, on to Holroyds, and across by Went- 
worth leigh. 
Till on leaving Payten's paddocks struck the road. 

His coat was barely moistened, but I walked him to 
the bridge. 
For full well I knew the line we meant that day 
Was fraught with many a rasper, many a tiring sandy 
ridge. 
Which the stoutest blood would 'need it all' to stay. 

I kept him gently moving, just to save him from a chill, 
Till the huntsman and the hounds appeared in view ; 

And I spied the field of redcoats coming winding up the 
hill. 
All, though scant in number, sportsmen good and true. 

We exchanged a cheery greeting, as we reined back 
into line 
To the master's warning, 'Steady, give them space!' 
And the huntsman cast 'them' forward, as a wliimper 
and a whine 
From old ' Sailor ' sent a glow to every face. 

Soon the air was in commotion with the music of his 
voice. 
And a merry chorus broke along the ground. 
In that wild expectant moment how the hunters' 
hearts rejoice ! 
How one impulse seizes man and horse and hound ! 

First a log fence rose before us, but we took it in our 
flight. 
And without a check went charging up the hill ; 
Then across the 'Railway Double' with the hounds 
still full in sight. 
Till they vanish down the gully by the mill. 

But to the shining water straight and bold the hunts- 
man led. 
We were after. And a rapid downward look 
Caught the upward gleam of steel shoes and a vivid 
flash of red. 
As the foremost horsemen safely flew the brook. 

Then the green turf lay before us stretching out a mile 
or more. 
'Take a breather now,' said Waldron, 'while you 
may !' 

VOL. II. 



And the thundering hoofs behind me, and the merry 
pack before, 
Might have turned an older head than mine that day. 

For half an hour we rattled, taking everything that came. 
Our only thought, ' Keep with them in the front' ; 

But the hardest ' nut ' amongst us curbed the inward 
jealous flame. 
Lest a foot put wrong should place him out the hunt. 

Safely o'er Macmillan's slip rails, now I eased him 
through the trees. 
Till we saw Toongabbie ' Double ' loom ahead ; 
But he faced the place selected, stride shortened and 
collected. 
And with scarce a scramble — oi'ec .' — on we sped 

Through a witliered belt of ti' scrub, and along the 
broken bank 
Of a blind creek. Almost hidden in the grass 
Lay a heap of fallen timber, twined with creepers 
ffrowins rank. 
I felt easier when behind me lay the mass. 

The pace was now a cracker to the dip at Seven Hills, 
Where we overtook the straggling pack ' at fault '; 

And none of us were sorry. — We had come the 'pace 
that kills '— 
Even the Bruisers didn't grumble at the halt. 

But we had not long to linger : by a well-judged cast 
in front 

The huntsman sent us streaming round the hill. 
By a sidelong glance I counted not a dozen in the hunt ; 

But I saw the cream were living with us still. 

O'er the next few fields we galloped, choosing each the 
weakest rail. 
And avoiding those that wouldn't break or bend. 
For, alas ! the hurried breathing, altered stride and 
switching tail 
Told no 'liberties' for him who 'd see the end. 

But soon the cosy ' Hunter's Rest ' lay smiling full in 
view. 
With the pack just disappearing in the yard. 
So I shook my gallant hunter up, and gave a wild 
' Halloo !' 
And o'er the last fence landed, hitting hard. 

And now the run is over, what a glorious run it was ! 
How each noble steed had played his brilliant part 
Is a by-word in the country — and not without cause — 
For to finish meant a lion's strength and heart. 

T. F. Macdonald. 
Q. 



BAUDELAIRE 



123 



BAUDELAIRE. 



LITERARY France, long conservative in tradition 
as Political France is revolutionary, has within 
the last fifty years itself undergone revolution. The 
standard of taste whicli consecrated the verse of 
Voltaire and Racine, or the prose of Pascal and 
Madame de Sevigne, and which in spite of French 
puritanism tolerates for its 'style' — that deliberate^ 
worded, clear-starched, creaseless style — such a work 
as Maiioii Lescaiit, could not survive the impetus of the 
Romantic School. Those who bespoke for Form in 
literature that pre-eminence over Power which Power 
really usurps over Form, and waged a plausible con- 
test so long as any incompatibility was admitted 
between the two, had to yield as soon as it was seen 
that the new Form implied a new Power and had its 
points of superiority to the old Form, precisely in the 
same way as the Power. 

This is what has happened in the case of ^^ictor 
Hugo. It has happened since in the case of Baude- 
laire. And since such a change of opinion means 
indemnity for the past as well as security for the 
future, it must apply to Shakespeare and other 
Romanticists, too long purged from the roll of classics 
by dis-sympathetic criticism : an act of retribution in 
which these two French poets would equally have 
acquiesced. But the catholicity of Hugo was not of 
the stamp of Baudelaire. Hugo was in many points 
a Frenchman of Frenchmen, an embodiment of that 
literary Chauvinism which makes France in some 
respects the most insular of nations. Even iii the 
English music - hall the speech and manner of a 
Frenchman are much better imitated than those of 
an Englishman at the Opera Comique. But within the 
last ten or fifteen years a great change has come over 
French literature and journalism in this resjiect ; the 
press has become more sympathetic and less self-suf- 
ficient ; and of this change Baudelaire was the earliest 
instance and indication. His critical standard may 
not have been of the highest ; his admiration of Poe, 
of translations from whom his own prose works consist, 
was excessive ; but a Frenchman who was so eager 
and so early to appreciate Wagner must rank as 
remai-kable in his generation. 

To speak of Hugo suggests a second point of com- 
parison which is not to the disadvantage of Baude- 
laire. He is not only a more sympathetic critic, but 
a more subtle and sympathetic poet, the coryphaeus 
of that Suggestive School which has not so much 
succeeded as established itself within the Romantic. 
These stanzas from his lyric ' Le Balcon,' and especially 
the lines italicised, will illustrate what is meant : — 

' Mere des souvenirs, maitresse des mattre.'ses, 
O toi, tous mes plaisirs ! 3 toi, tons vies devoirs! 
Tu te rappelleras la beaute des caresses. 
La douceur du foyer et le charme des soirs, 
Mere des souvenirs, maitresse des maitresses, 



Les soirs illumines par I'ardeur du charbon, 

Et ies soirs au balcon, voiles de vapeurs roses. 

Que ton sein m'etait doux ! que ton cceur m'etait bon ! 

Noits avons dit souvent dHmp^rissables choses^ 

Les soirs illumines par I'ardeur du charbon. 

Que les soleils sont beaux dans les chaudes soirees ! 
Que I'espace est profond ! que le coeur est puissant ! 
En me penchant vers toi, reine des adorees, 
Js croyais respirer le farfum de ton sang. 
Que les soleils sont beaux dans les chaudes soirees ! 

La nuit s'epaississait ainsi qu'une cloison, 

Et mes yeux dans le noir devinaient tes prunelles, 

Et je bitvais ton sonffle^ 6 douceur^ 6 poison 1 

Et tes pieds s^ endormaient dans vies vtains fraternelies. 

La nuit s'epaississait ainsi qu'une cloison. 

Ces serments, ces parfums, ces baisers infinis, 
Renaitront-ils d'un gouffre interdit a nos sondes, 
Comme montent au ciel les soleils rajeunis 
Apres s'etre laves au fond des mers profondes ? 
servients ! 6 parfums ! 6 baisers iiifinis I ' 

The feeling of this, the delicacy, and the flexibility 
of the verse, are more akin to English than to ordinary 
French poetry. In that regard Baudelaire is less in 
touch with Hugo than with Swinburne. But he has not 
the range or the penetration, the complex utterance and 
complex power, of the great English Morbidist ; and 
perhaps no better evidence of this could be given than 
his sonnet, ' La Geante,' as compared with the stanza 
suggested by it in Swinburne's fraternal elegy on 
Baudelaire himself. As I have italicised the expres- 
sions in the first which are weak and halting, I have 
done the same in the second with the touches that are 
original ; and it will be seen how, rejecting all that is 
faulty and straggling in the French version, Swinburne 
has collected all that is grand and forcible, and added 
to it a picturesque suggestiveness, as well as a sculptur- 
esque unity and concentration. 

* Du temps que la Nature en sa verve puissante 
Concevait chaque jour des enfants monstrueux, 
J'eusse aime vivre aupres d'une jeune geante, 
Comme au pieds d'une reine un chat voluptueiix. 

J'eusse aime voir son corps fleurir avec son ame, 
Et grandir librement dans ses terribles jeux ; 
Deviner si son coeur couve une sombre flamme 
Aux hiiviides brouillards qui nagent dans les yeux ; 

Parcourir a loisir ses raagnifiques formes, 
Ramper sur le versant de ses genoux enormes, 
Et parfois en ete, quand les soleils vialsains 
Lasse la font s'etendre a travers la campagne, 
Dormir nonchalavivient ^ I'ombre de ses seins, 
Comme nn haviean paisible au pied d'une montagne.' 



' Now all strange hours and all strange loves are over, 
Dreams and desires and sombre songs and sweet, 
Hast thou found place at the great knees and feet 
Of some pale Titan-woman like a lover, 
Such as thy vision here solicited, 



IM 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



Under the shadow of her fair vast head, 
The deep division of prodigious breasts, 

The solemn slope of mighty limbs asleep, 

T/id weight of awful tresses that still keep 
The savour and shade of old-world pine-forests 

Where the wet hill-winds weep ? ' 

This magnificent conception of Baudelaire's was all, 
yet not quite all, his own. Whence did it come to him? 
It breathes more of the colossal architecture and sculp- 
ture of Thebes or Nineveh, and the hot winds that 
blow from their deserts, than of the spirit of European 
art. The truth is that Baudelaire, who was by birth 
and habit a Frenchman, by culture a cosmopolitan, was 
also by culture, but still more by temperament, an 
Oriental. Of good birth and prospects, he gave on 
approaching maturity such indications of a desire to 
embrace the literary career that he was shipped off by 
his family, like Clive, to a commercial position in the 
East. No more than Clive's could they have imagined 
the consequences (in Baudelaire's case quite invisible 
to the naked eye) of that little trip. Probably no 
better cosmopolitan school can be fovmd for a Parisian 
than an English-speaking commercial colony; and here 
Baudelaire no doubt laid the foundation of his peculiar 
admiration of English ways and English manners. The 
East, too, he had seen, approached, not as in the 
experience of many a traveller of that day, after an in- 
terminable sea-voyage, but with gradual eclaircissement 
and introduction — Mauritius, Madagascar, Malabar. 
And when he returned to Europe liis own master at 
the age of twenty-one, he brought with him that sense 
of Oriental light and luxury, languor and insinuation, 
vastness and profusion, which more than casually in- 
spires and colours the Paradis Artificiels and the Fleiirs 
du Mai. 

But to say this is to have said little. The suppressio 
veri amounts to a siiggesiio falsi. Many a traveller 
besides Baudelaire or Macaulay has brought back pro- 
found impressions from the East. But what is charac- 
teristic of Macaulay and the ordinary traveller, and 
distinguishes them for ever from Baudelaire, is that in 
the phantasmagoria of Oriental life and its rapid 
succession of effects they see only the points of vivid 
difference. The imaginative intelligence Macaulay 
ascribes to Burke with respect to a civilisation he had 
never seen was his own, and it took the shape of 
intei'est in a people who are dark where Englishmen 
are fair, who wear turbans instead of felt hats, and 
write from right to left — an interest and intelligence 
not much superior to that with which the country j'okel 
receives the information that in Australia the natives 
hang their heads in the opposite direction from his and 
have warm weather at Christmas. For the one civili- 
sation over the other Macaulay expresses no preference ; 
it is not his business. And if Baudelaire prefers, as he 
appears to do, the duskier, not to say swarthier ideali- 
ties of Eastern existence, he is only doing what a small 
minority of Europeans have done before and since. 
What distinguishes him from Macaulay is that he sees 



not the points of vivid difference but the points of vital 
idcnliti), and develops in face of Eastern civilisation that 
Aboriginal Sense, the mystical sense of affinity with a 
people having a common descent, which, so far from 
weakening as in most men, seems to have strengthened 
with the lapse of ages — the sense of Keats before a 
Grecian urn, of Burne-Jones before an Etruscan vase — 
as inexplicable as it is intense, and as ineffaceable as it 
is instantaneously evoked. The age which has given 
us the theory of Evolution has given us also these 
mysterious affinities of the individual, and when its 
history comes to be written it will be found that the 
principle of Descent has played a part in its art as well 
as in its science. 

Hence it is that those who look in the work of 
Baudelaire only for vivid impressions of the East will 
be disappointed. What is picturesque in the colouring 
simply because it is alien is not much to be found 
there. The maturity of his verse itself is evidence to 
the contrary, arising from the fact that it is not a 
record of first impressions, but one in which the spirit 
of Eastern life is revealed. It is the poetry, not of 
the sunset, but of the afterglow — a sense of effects not 
to be seized, but fatefully to be acquiesced in — without 
which the rendering might be picturesque, but would 
not be sympathetic, or might be impressive, but not 
imaginative. What in Baudelaire's verse chiefly betrays 
commerce and acquaintance with the East is to be 
found in his workmanship : the febrile sense of beauty, 
the lingering utterance, the fiu'tive suggestion, the 
nonchalant choice of title or turn of phrase. But what 
most of all is peculiar to him in this respect is his 
sense of the Immutable and the Eternal. It is not for 
nothing that the doctrine of Nirvana has come to us 
from the land of the sun; and its significance is as 
great in art as in philosophy. For Nirvana means not 
extinction or suspension of mental activity, but equi- 
poise. It is this equipoise, as applied to the represen- 
tation of visible objects, that is the very soul of Greek 
as of all monumental art. And no finer expression of 
it, or of the sense of the Inevitable and Eternal which 
is its own inner expression, could be given than in the 
lines of Baudelaire on the statue : — 

' EUe pleure, insensee, parce qu'elle a vecu ! 
Et parce qu'elle vit ! Mais ce qu'elle deplore 
Surtout, ce qui la fait fremir jusqu'au.x genoux, 
C'est que demain, helas ! il faudra vivre encore ! 
Demain, apres-demain et toujours — comme nous ! ' 

This is a pure piece of what we mean by artistic 
workmanshijj — imagination touched to the quick by the 
senses. How much in Baudelaire generally is imagina- 
tive, how much sensuous, is a question which it would 
take too much time to answei'. The enigma with 
respect to his hashish-eating is the same as with De 
Quincey's opium-drinking, and whatever solution will 
apply to the one will a))ply to the other. His own 
personal calm of manner had quite another connection. 
And about this one curious point may be noticed. 
According to Gautier, he had a great dislike to eccen- 



RUE AND ROSES 125 

tricity — even artistic eccentricity — of dress and deport- manner. In such a bizarre and saturnine vein the 

ment, a disHke that made no distinction between artist is not central to himself, let alone his company, 

slouched hats and long moustachios, and the cheap We would fain have remembered him in moods less 

finery of the snob. To him, who ui his own temie tentative and less apocryphal than that in which his 

modelled himself after the correctness of the English biographer introduces him to us : the presiding genius 

gentleman, the brusque enthusiasm and careless ex- of the little coterie in the Hotel Pimodan — the saloon 

aggeration of the artist manner were repellent. Now Louis Quatorze, the company (they too Louis Qua- 

this in an artist, living among artists, and above all, torze) no larger than might be numbered on the fingers 

French artists, was paradox enough. But it wears of the left hand — Boissard the painter, musician, poet, 

an air still more paradoxical, and less agreeable, dilettante ; the sculptor Feucheres ; Maryx, the 

to learn that the Baudelaire who did not permit him- painter's model, the superb original of the ' Mignon ' of 

self in the minor exaggerations of dress and manner Scheffer and the ' Glory' of Paul Delaroche ; the other 

should permit himself in the graver of thought and nameless figure in muslin, her hair moist from the bath, 

conversation. To sustain an absurdity merely for the who posed for the ' Femme au Serpent ' of Clesinger ; 

sake of absurdity, as he was in the habit of doing, with and, last survivor of that brilliant company, best of 

a consistency however ' mathematical,' is as certain a masters and disciples, and assuredly not worst of critics 

sign of underbreeding as the habit of social controversy, and biographers, Theophile Gautier ! 
and a more certain than any oddity of dress or William Renton. 



MARGUERITE. 

LOVETH he, or loveth not. 
All these idle years .'' 
An he love me laughter ; 
An he love not tears. 

Loveth he, or loveth not ? 

Flower, canst thou tell .■■ 
Thou shalt deck my bosom 

An he love me well. 

Loveth he, or loveth not ? 

Oh, but Life were sweet ! 
Say Yes. — 'Ah ! yes, he loves thee. 

Gentle Marguerite.' 

Ernest Radfohd. 



RUE AND ROSES. 

SHE mingled me rue and roses. 
And I found my bliss complete ; 
The roses are gone, 
But the rue lives on, 
The bitter that lived with the sweet. 

Life will mingle you rue and roses. 
The roses will fall at your feet ; 

But deep in the rue 

That their leaves bestrew. 
The bitter will smell of the sweet. 

Michael Field. 



126 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



THE SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY. 



THE Scottish National Portrait Gallery has at 
length taken possession of a portion of the 
spacious and picturesque building provided for its 
accommodation, and for that of the National Museum 
of Antiquities, in Queen Street, Edinburgh, by the 
generosity of Mr. Findlay. The portraits already 
acquired have been hung in a large double gallery on 
the first floor, and — numbering in all about four 
hundred items — form an interesting nucleus of what 
bids fair to become in the future an adequate and 
representative collection of the effigies of eminent 
Scotsmen. Many of the portraits shown are already 
familiar to the public, having been exhibited when the 
Gallery occupied temporary premises, first on a then 
vacant portion of the present site, and afterwards in 
the University New Buildings ; but the collection has 
been inci-eased by a few important works acquired 
by purchase, by several gifts, and by a series of pictures 
transferred from the National Gallery of Scotland on 
the Mound. Among the last named, such works as 
Lord President M'Neill, by Duncan ; Sir David Wilkie, 
R.A., by Beechey; the second Lord Melville, by 
Colvin Smith; a telling tuU-length of Sir Ralph Aber- 
cromby, by the same painter, and a fine Raeburn head 
of Francis Horner, are the property of the Board of 
Manufactures ; while among works belonging to the 
Royal Scottish Academy that have been transferred 
from the National Gallei-y are three excellent full- 
length examples of Sir John Watson-Gordon — highly 
characteristic jjortraits of Lord Cockburn, Lord Ruther- 
furd, and .Sir William Gibson-Craig ; and that admirable 
Raeburn equestrian full-length of Professor John 
Wilson, the powerful technical qualities of which can 
now be more adequately estimated than when the 
picture occupied its former elevated position on the 
walls of the first room of the national collection on the 
Mound. The recent gifts to the Gallery, exhibited 
for the first time, include an important portrait of 
Principal Tulloch, specially painted by the late Robert 
Herdman, R.S.A., for this collection — a half-length 
replica of his full-length executed from life in 1879 foi' 
the St. Andrews University ; an interesting cabinet- 
sized full-length of Sir George Harvey, P.R.S.A., 
represented at work before his easel in his studio, by 
John Ballantyne, R.S.A. ; a telling bronze bust of Dr. 



Guthrie, by Sir John Steell, R.S.A. , giving all the 
rugged power and dignity of his fine Scotch face ; and 
a crayon portrait of Dr. John Brown, by J. R. Swinton. 
The most important of the works recently acquired by 
purchase are three gallery full-lengths of royal personr 
ages in all the bravery of their flowing ermined robes. 
One of these is a firnily executed coronation picture of 
George ii., signed and dated by John Shackleton, court 
painter to that monarch, a work formerly at Coldbrook 
Park, Monmouthshire, and doubtless presented to Sir 
Charles Hanbury Williams, the diplomatist, by the 
monarch whom it represents. The full-lengths of 
George iii. and his Queen are by Allan Ramsay, and 
were formerly at Osmaston Hall, Dei-by ; that of 
Queen Charlotte is an excellent example of the painter's 
graceful and dexterous treatment of female likenesses. 
Other works recently bought are a half-length of 
Queen Caroline of Anspach by Amigoni, one of Queen 
Caroline, consort of George iv., by Samuel Lane, and 
the cabinet-sized rendering of the Duke of York by 
Yellowlees after Beechey. A word should be said of 
the very individual and telling series of portraits, 
chiefly depicting members of the Society of Anti- 
quaries of Scotland, executed in pencil and on the scale 
of life, at the end of the last century, by John Brown ; 
who himself appears in two portraits in the Gallery, one 
of which portrays him in company with Alexander 
Runciman, his friend and instructor in art. Much 
interest also attaches to the extensive series of medal- 
lion portraits by James Tassie, one of the most cele- 
brated of the pupils of the Foulis Academy of Glasgow, 
which includes the heads of a very large proportion 
of the celebrities of the end of the eighteenth century, 
and to the medallions modelled, in a similar style, by 
his nephew and successor William Tassie, and by John 
Henning, H. R.S.A. Prominent among the works of 
sculpture are Sir John Steell's full-length statues of 
Lord President Boyle and Governor-General the Mar- 
quis of Dalhousie, with such of his busts as those of 
the Queen, the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Edin- 
burgh, Lord Cockburn, and Lord Fullerton, along with 
many others. The poi-trait-sculpture of Chantrey, 
Joseph, Nollekens, and Brodie is also well i-epresented 
in the Gallery. 



REVIEWS AND NOTES. 



New Songs of Innocence. By Janet Logie Robertson. Edin- 
burgh ; Macniven & Wallace. 

'That's genuine poetry; the woman possesses ihe divine 
breath ! ' exclaimed a friend, as he laid down the book v.'.:\\ an 
appreciative imposition of the hand on its cover, after an abscil'ed 
perusal, varied by snatches fervently read aloud by way of grow- 
ing demonstration of his conclusion. A careful examination cf 
Mrs. Logie Robertson's dainty volume compels us cordially to 



endorse the opinion of this critic, who is by no means extravagant 
in his eulogies of verse. The volume is full of fine thought and 
feeling, artistically expressed with taste and tenderness in sweet 
and simple numbers. Its theme is the oldest but ever newest, the 
love of a mother for her infants, with its varied lights and shades, 
liappy hopes and trembling fears. This mother, while bearing 
anri rearing several children, has expressed, as suggested by com- 
mon domestic experiences, the thoughts and yearnings that burned 
in her heart over her nestlings, in a strain of true poetic insight 



REVIEWS AND NOTES 



127 



and iinaflected and sensible sentiment, for which niolhers all the 
world over, and lovers of the muse, will thank her. The book is 
a real contribution to the small, though happily ever-accumulating, 
sum of the true utterances of ' the bliss of motherhood ' felt by all 
good mothers, but rarely caught and crystallised as they are here. 
The author claims a place for herself all too modest, as ' a cushat 
brooding o'er her nest,' not an eagle, 'singing common thoughts 
on common things.' The things are certainly common, because 
universal, but the thoughts are by no means common or common- 
place. They are those only of a sweet-souled woman and tiue 
poet, though they will be felt by thousands as genuine and deep, 
expressing the inarticulate yearnings of maternity in a way that 
will elevate and refine. Then, best of all, they are unaffected and 
simple, without the slightest touch of affectation or superiority, too 
common in present-day literature. They are, besides, refreshingly 
free from conventionality, and are the expression of as clear an 
intellect as they are of a warm heart, unfettered by narrow ortho- 
doxy either in society or theology, and rejoicing in the freedom of 
nature. A distinguishing characteristic of these innocent songs is 
their all-pervading ethical element, the constant conversion of 
every incident, however petty, into a means of moral culture for 
her growing children, not by way of hackneyed sermonising, but 
of wise suggestion towards making them tender and good. Simple 
as they are, they often touch the highest and hardest problems, as 
of the 'Wail from out the world's unrest,' Wordsworth's 'Sad 
music of humanity,' which rouses the kindly resolve : — 

' Nay, from our castle will we go, 
With sympathy and succour both, 
Down through the sorrowing vales below, 
To aid the meanest nothing loth.' 

Humour is absent, the mother's heart being too much in earnest to 
feel it ; but mild sarcasm at times enriches the harmonies, as 
when speaking of a scarecrow her son first sees, she prettily 
moralises, addressing ' my Willie ' about the scarecrow ' called 
Public Opinion ' : — 

' It frowns on us all, man and woman, 
And shakes its wise head of wood 
Whene'er we do anything human, 
Or try to do anything good.' 

Her dominant theme is the gladness and glory, the elevating and 
curative power of refined love in the home, in society, and in all 
departments of life : — 

' O life ! it is a weary toil 
In bodies rooted to the soil, 
Inspired to soar, but wanting wings, 
Choked in a fog of common things, 
Each rising joy beat back by rain. 
Each budding pleasure nipped by pain — 
What is there that this earth can give 
To make our life less hard to live ? 
Love is the sun, benignly fair. 
That warms for us life's chilly air.' 

And the whole of her poetry is delicately interwoven with golden 
threads of outdoor imagery, the harvest of a deep love of Nature, 
and perception of her inner meanings and higher impulses. 

We do not much care to qualify our admiration with censure ; 
and indeed there is little room. The rhythm, as a whole musical 
and sustained, with few inversions, occasionally drags, but shows 
no common gift of metrical speech. The rhymes are easy and 
generally faultless, dealing frequently and successfully in doubles ; 
but they sometimes exhibit too plainly the effort it cost to fetch 
them, and occasionally trip, as when she rhymes blossom and 
bosom — though, in this instance, she may claim to follow her 
master, Blake, who does the same more than once, but whose ear, 
through defective education, was by no means perfect in this 
particular. 

There is one matter, however, on which we at once take our 
stand as against the accomplished author, the title of her book. 
We hold it a pity and a mistake to select a name that courts com- 
parison with a 'great poet, and challenges defeat. The old title. 
Songs of Innocence, should be left sacred for all time to dear 
William Blake's unique and delicious booklet of 1788-89, issued to 



a blind world just a century past ; as well make a New Faery 
Queen or a New Hamlet, as one holy name has been desecrated 
in The New Pilgrim's Progress. The title was selected, no doubt, 
as a true tribute to the master she follows ; but the author is 
able to christen her own work for herself, and we hope she will 
do so in future editions, which are sure to follow. 

We lay down the pretty and fragrant posie with regret, and 
shall lift it not seldom for pleasure and profit. It is certain to 
take a high and permanent place, and to rejoice and relieve, 
express and elevate, many a mother's heart. W. J. 

Margaret Malipkant, by Mrs. Comyns Carr, with its poetic 
colouring, its fresh pastoral feeling, and firm, but graceful, delinea- 
tion of character, comes to us like a breath from the country. 
From beginning to end the treatment is refined and artistic, and, on 
emergency, sufficiently powerful. The subtle yet clear manner in 
which situations are suggested is skilful in the extreme ; and the 
wayward, warm-hearted heroine is so womanly without being hyper- 
feminine (or feline), so essentially human in her virtues and short- 
comings, as to win, and keep, our interest and sympathy throughout. 

The scene is laid in a marsh-country by the sea ; the players are 
simple country-folk ; the drama they take part in is more or less of 
an idyl. The quaint old-world farmhouse, scented, as it were, 
with lavender and pot-pourri, kissed by the sun and buffeted by 
the sea-wind, forms an admirable setting for the homely hopes 
and fears, the strong pure emotions, that the author portrays. 

' Bjyond the door one could see the square of grass-plot, with the 
wide border running round it, in which old-fashioned flowers stood 
up against the brick wall ; and over the wall one could see just a 
little strip of marsh and sea in the distance.' 

Here is one of the many exquisitely-touched word-sketches 
scattered through the book : ' The drive home was soothing 
enough across those miles of serene pasture-land whose marge the 
sea was always kissing, and where the sheep cropped, in sleepy 
passiveness, beneath the faint rosy clouds that lay motionless upon 
the soft blue ; the vast dreamy pastures, browning with autumn 
tints of many planes of autumn grasses that changed as they 
swayed in the lazy breeze, were hemmed by a winding strip of 
beach, pink or blue, according as the sun was behind or above one, 
and to-night bordered beyond it by a stretch of golden sand, over 
which rows upon rows of little waves rippled with the incoming 
tide. We drove along the margin of the beach ; the yellow sea- 
poppies bloomed amid their pale blue-green leaves upon every 
mound of shingle, and not even the distant church-spires and masts 
of ships, that told of man's presence, could disturb the breathless 
placidity that no memory of storm or strife seemed to awaken into 
a throb of life.' 

The sweet, well-nigh Puritan, portrait of the house-mother is 
excellent, reminding one of a last-century miniature, but living and 
natural enough in all conscience. Lovers of unspoiled nature and 
human nature will certainly do well to follow Margaret through 
her dreams and her awakenings, her joys and her sorrows. 

The new charter proposed by the Royal Scottish Academy is 
just such a document as one might have expected from a body of 
reactionaries. We are compelled to hold over detailed criticism 
of it until our next issue. Meantime we may say that it practi- 
cally isolates the Academy from all touch with growing art in 
Scotland, and simply perpetuates on the narrowest lines the 
narrowest of trade - unions. Strong representations must be 
made to prevent the charter being granted in its present form. 
The Academy cannot aflford cynically to disregard the opinion of 
the general community of artists from which its membership is 
drawn, and upon whose good opinion it must continually depend. 
A public body, as it pretends to be, is of necessity open to public 
criticism, and no amount of sneering on the part of the President, 
or practice of the method of the ostrich on the part of the mem- 
bers, can avail to enable them to escape from it. The charter, 
instead of being a charter of freedom, is a charter of restriction, 
and this is so definitely against the spirit of the age that it must 
fail. It is for the Academy and the Privy Council to determine 
now whether the charter or the Academy itself is to be sacrificed. 



128 THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



L 



LITTLE LETTICE. 

ITTLE Lettice is dead, they say. 
The brown, sweet child who rolled in the hay ; 
Ah ! where shall we find her ? 
For the neighbours pass 
To the pretty lass 
In a linen cere-cloth to wind her. 



If her sister were set to look 
By the church in a green, nettle nook. 
And the way were shown her 
Through the coffin-gate 
To her dead playmate. 
She would fly too frighted to own her. 

Should she come at a noonday call — 
Ah ! stealthy, stealthy, with no footfall. 
And no laughing chatter — 

To her mother 'twere worse 
Than a barren curse 
That her own little wench should pat her. 

Little Lettice is dead and gone ! 
The stream by her garden wanders on 
Through the rushes wider : 
She fretted to know 
How its bright drops grow 
On the hills, but no hand would guide her. 

Little Lettice is dead and lost ; 
Her willow-tree boughs by storm are tossed 
(Oh the swimming sallows !) 

Where she crouched to find 
The nest of the wind 
Like a waterfowl's in the shallows. 

Little Lettice is out of sight ; 
The river-bed and the breeze are bright : 
Ah me ! were it sinning 

To dream that she knows 
Where the soft wind rose 
That her willow-branches is thinning r 

Little Lettice has lost her name, 
Slipped away from our praise and our blame ; 
Let not Love pursue her, 
But conceive her free 
WTiere the bright drops be 
On the hills, and no longer rue her. 

Mkhaei, Field. 

Julij 188,9. 



Eilinlmrgh : T. and A. Coiistaile, Printers to Her Majesty- 



The Scottish Art Review 



Edited by JAMES MAYOR. 



Vol. II. OC TOBER 1889. No. 17. 



Lli^ AND DEATH. 

QJHE holdeth a tangled skein, 
^^ And her fevered fingers stray 

'Mid the blood-red threads and grey; 

Sighing, she strives alway. 
Toils at the coils in vain. 

Sister, what do you see ? 

■ ' Doubt, and Terror, and Shame, 

Falsehood twining and tame. 

Wrath as a burning flame. 
Threads that I cannot free.' 

Sister, what do you see ? 

' Night with never a star, 

Hope that fleeth afar. 

Sin, and sorrow, and war. 
Threads that I cannot free.' 

Look again and behold 
One that draweth anear, 
One with calm eyes and clear 
(Eyes with never a tear). 

Fingers cunning and cold. 

Comest to save or slay ? 

' Nay, but to save, in sooth. 
Nay, but for pity and ruth.' 
Lo ! till) tangled threads are smooth. 

And the skein is laid away. 

Graham R. Tomson. 



130 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



STUDENTS' WOKK AT SOUTH KENSINGTON, AUGUST 1889. 



TO introduce abstract questions, touching the 
fundamental principles of the constitution of 
the exhibiting Society, would be obviously out of 
place while criticising an ordinary picture gallery. 
But the products of the ' National Competition of 
Schools of Science and Art and Art Classes/ now 
being shown at South Kensington Museum, can hai'dly 
be considered on their merits alone. For the com- 
paratively modern experiment that has subsidised a 
School of Art at the expense of the nation is, or 
should be, dependent on the evidence it offers of 
healthy growth for its continued existence. There- 
fore the question — Can the art of design be taught, 
and, if it can, does South Kensington employ the right 
methods of education ? — will intrude itself For 
nothing can justify the employment of the costly and 
complex machinery that attempts to train the native 
art of the whole kingdom, except a fair record of suc- 
cessful progress is maintained year after year. 

Speaking frankly and dispassionately on the point 
at issue, the results of recent years hardly appear to 
justify the means employed. Whether it be that the 
art of design is unteachable, or that the South Ken- 
sington system is radically wrong, cannot be decided 
hastily, yet no thoughtful person, after study of the 
i7i picked examples from 139,31-t works sent up for 
examination, could maintain an optimist's view of the 
Government Training Schools. The magnitude of the 
task involved in selecting from such a mass of work 
might fairly be urged against any shortcomings of the 
chosen specimens. Yet, if we cannot pronounce a 
verdict on the survival of the fittest in the hands of 
capable examiners, what other course is open ? 

In considering works produced entirely by students 
still in pupilage, it is possible to waive many things. 
Ripe scholarsliip, perfect adaptability to their intended 
pui'pose, exquisite judgment in selection of motives, or 
technical knowledge of the manufactures they aim to 
adorn, all-important as they are, and integral features 
of designs by practical artists, may be absent in the 
efforts of j^yupils ; and yet such omission may be par- 
doned if the special qualities of youthful work are 
well in evidence. To youth we can forgive the 
natural errors of over-exuberant imagination, faults 
of untried technique, and prodigal abundance of 
motives, but not the absence of those exaggerated 
virtues that are only vicious by their uncritical afflu- 
ence. Nor can we but deplore a lack of noble effort, 
or unrestrained daring, however futile such attempts 
might have been. 

To think that yoiuig England is capable of no more 
virile impetuous work than the mass of these designs 
offer, is not only fatal to our belief that a renascent 



period of decorative art is dawning upon us, but 
judging by the vigour shown in other fields, and the 
energy displayed in less artistic avocations, would be 
condemning the victims instead of the aggressors. 
For in nearly all the examples shown this year there 
is ample proof that elaborate finish of a sort, and 
supreme mechanism, is supposed to find more favour 
with the authorities than novelty of idea or intelligent 
compliance with the broad principles of design. 

If this contented mediocrity is not rudely awakened, 
the very name of South Kensington will be a hindrance 
to the foi'tunes of its pupils when they seek employ- 
ment in the open market. In more than one manu- 
facturing firm to-day, ' No student from South Ken- 
sington need apply ' is a motto rigidly acted upon, 
although it may not appear in their advertisements 
for assistants, nor be hung up in their offices. But 
that it would be obviously a flagrant breach of implied 
confidence to quote the names of many important 
manufacturers who hold this view of South Kensington 
and its pupils, it would be easy to adduce proof to show 
that such a statement is no random assei-tion, but 
based upon facts, and hazarded here with no atom of 
prejudice against the system, or those working it. We 
cannot permit ourselves the pleasing fallacy that such 
boycotting is merely an effort to oppose the progress 
of a clique, or explain it by saying that its students go 
forth with ideas too novel, and aims too elevated, for 
the needs of modern commerce. The manufacturer of 
to-day is not always an unlettered man ; he may not 
understand art, but he has a keen sense of novelty, 
and does not require merely skilful copyists to supply 
him with tame transcripts of hackneyed work. His 
mechanics are able to produce such ; what he needs is 
an abundance of fresh ideas and original designs. If 
such novel conceptions are also artistic, he would not 
necessarily object to them on that score. But if tliey 
do not display the creative fertility that is the very 
essence of the art of decoration, he will fill up the 
ranks of his designers with men who possess that one 
talent, although they are ignorant of the elementary 
laws of drawing, colour, and composition. 

In briefly commenting upon the more noticeable 
examples of the exhibition, it will be best to follow 
the order employed by the examiners. For the 
numerical arrangement of the catalogue has nothing 
in common with the hanging of the pictures, but is 
grouped into two geographical sections, each again 
split up into classes according to their rank and merit. 
Thus the labour of finding any given exhibit from the 
catalogue is no small one. For example : 391 is placed 
in the gallery at the top of the stairs, 392 in the room 
leading out of the architectural court on the ground 



STUDENTS' WORK AT SOUTH KENSINGTON, AUGUST 1889 



131 



■ flooi'j neai' the main entrance, and Syy in the long 
galleiy separating the two large courts. If the 
authorities could only arrange to adopt the customaiy 
sequence whereby exhibits and description run parallel 
with each other, it would enable a conscientious visitor 
to give less divided attention to the works of art 
themselves. 

In the Modelling Section, examined by Sir J. E. 
Boehm, Bart., R.A., and H. H. Armstead, R.A., the 
judges regret 'that the figures in the round are not so 
good as usual, especially the copies, which are few in 
number and poor.' There is, however, one brilliant 
exception, that has been adjudged a gold medal, and 
is endorsed by peculiarly outspoken praise on the part 
of the examiners. This is a statuette of a nude boy, 
by Ernest Fabian (391), modelled in a way that gives 
promise of the very highest. There is a naive frank- 
ness and reticent direct simplicity about this charming 
figure that recalls the finest antiques, yet the subject 
is but an ordinary boy gracefully posed, true to nature 
and instinct with vitality. That this success is no mere 
fluke is proved by the same exhibitor's wax model for a 
candelabrum (396), which is obedient to the best tradi- 
tions of metal design, true to the period selected, and 
betrays the touch of a genuine artist in its handling 
throughout. The design for a bronze plaque (39), for 
which P. J. J. Brooks gains a silver medal, displays 
a somewhat novel treatment of fish-forms, pleasantly 
modelled and well composed. Frederick Shelley's 
(399) circidar bas-relief of ' Perseus ' is decorative and 
beautiful ; his curiously realistic attempt at landscape, 
with figures in low relief, is novel, and, if not quite a 
success, was worth the effort, and merited the silver 
medal he has won for each. The other works in this 
section lack distinction ; either their subjects are 
ignoble, or their treatment is commonplace. It is 
noteworthy that South Kensington itself has sent up 
all the best in this class of designs. 

The classes of Mechanical Drawings, Antique 
Figures, Studies of Draperies, and of Flowers, call 
for no special remark. They are purely scholastic in 
aim and treatment, aiming at the most commonplace 
standard of merit, and reaching it chiefly by laborious 
detail and niggling petty work, that is as lifeless and 
weary to contemplate as it must have been to put 
upon paper. 

The drawings from the life are also mere technical 
achievements of rude unselected facts, grasped more 
or less clearly, and reproduced mca-e or less crudely. 
The exceptions are two series of time sketches in 
chalk, by Frederick Shelley (392, gold medal) and 
George Cartlridge ('t09, bronze medal). In the whole 
class there is a lack of nobility and power, all the 
studies are so unmistakably merely naked models, not 
masterly presentations of the real beauty of the un- 
draped form. 

The section of Decorative Design is the really im- 
portant one of the whole competition. The Royal 
Academy, the Slade, and other schools, no doubt in- 



directly include it, but South Kensington and its 
branches alone make Design their foremost endeavour. 
That the other classes show merely average work 
would matter little were this only an unimpeachable 
triumph, but that it barely escapes utter failure is all 
that the most lenient critic could dare to say with 
absolute candour. 

For Design generally the examiners were Messrs. 
William Moi-ris and Walter Crane (coupled with Mr. 
Alan S. Cole for one of the sections). It must have been 
no easy task for the judges to tabulate the merits of 
works submitted, whereof every other one (if we may 
estimate the unseen rejected by the accepted ones) 
was in more or less palpable imitation of the styles of 
the two examiners themselves. The perversions and 
parodies of Mr. Walter Crane's black and white work, 
and Mr. William Morris's surface decoration, are in 
some numbers quaintly ludicrous in their effect. The 
exhibits 119, 281, 2S6", with many others, could be 
cited in proof. All through the whole series of 
designs a melancholy poverty of thought and idea is 
conspicuous, nearly every example is derivative, some 
boldly and flagrantly, others timidly and meanly. 
From all sources, old and new, consciously or uncon- 
sciously, the designers have been swayed by memories 
of former work ; hardly a dozen betrayed any original 
feeling for harmony of colour, novelty in composition, 
or new conventional treatment of natural forms., 

A gold medal, coupled with the Princess of Wales's 
scholarship, awarded to Miss Maggie Strang for ' sur- 
face decoration' (2), may possibly be the best work 
by a lady artist exhibited, but that it is in itself an 
entirely satisfactory design, either in its colour scheme, 
its disposition of parts, or its invention, could hardly 
be claimed. It is undoubtedly an admirable effort for 
a student to have accomplished; but as a work that has 
taken the most valuable prize, — the most fortunate of 
nearly one hundred and forty thousand attempts, — it 
yields a pungent text for an impeachment of a system 
showing this as one of its most successful perform- 
ances in the course of a whole year's work. The 
printed cotton design (W. E. Holt, 14) is a curiously 
' spotty ' decoration, that does not convey at first sight 
the reasons for its awarded medal. Robert Sloane (79), 
A. Walker (80), and J. Sellers (107), all show varying 
degrees of excellence in their work. H. S. Cole's 
(34) is commonplace. Gertrude Bradley's (l64) frieze, 
in spite of suggesting so strongly a Christmas card, 
has singular buoyancy in its poised figures. Gertrude 
Ginn's design for a mosaic pavement is entirely 
satisfactory, ingenious in invention, and well-suited 
to the material under treatment. Another mosaic 
design, hanging near it, conspicuous by its Greek 
motto, is also delightful in colour and arrangement. 
Fred Mason's (9) well-painted design for a hanging 
violates every principle of decorative composition. In 
each detail it is full of mei-itorious quality, but as a 
whole most undecoi-ative. In pottery designs there 
is shown a fairly original one for the frieze of a vase, 



132 



THE SCOTTISH AUT REVIEW 



the lines of the figures recalling Blake's work. The 
modelled ' design in wax for a vase/ by Frederick 
Carderj is rightly held worthy of a gold medal. The 
delft plates (364) by Henry S. Penson are good 
examples of new ideas in old manners. In stained 
glass Jessie Rowat, in ' Tempestas ' (78), nearly carries 
off the honours of the exhibition ; it is fresh, clever, 
and pleasing, and with a very little more grip of 
treatment would be entirely good. H. Paynes's 
stained glass (10) is also meritorious. In lace, Nos. 
40 and 33S are practical and passably successful. 
The carved wood newspaper-rack by Elizabeth Yoxall 
(45) is very capable work, and unhackneyed in its 
treatment. In the Architectural Class (7), Frank 
Shayler's is picturesque, and some of the drawings 
from old buildings are correct and valuable studies. 
The still-life groups cannot be deemed satisfactory, 
either as decorative arrangements, nor yet if con- 
sidered as pictures. Some show good textures and 
skilful brush-work. 240 (E. J. Sullivan) has great 
promise, considering the age of its author ; but the 
works as a whole are interesting purely as exercises, 
none reaching the dignity of pictures, although 183 
(Katherine E. Cornish) is a charmingly wrought water- 
colour that tempts one to except it from the faint 
praise bestowed on the others. 

The moral of the whole display is written clearly 
for all who care to read it. It is evident enough that 
the students, as a body, are in bondage to old tradi- 
tions, wherein neatness and pettiness are held to be 
the chief factors in design. No words could be too 
strong to condemn this fatal heresy. In good work of 
all schools, whether Eastern or Western ideals are 
accepted, great things cannot be accomplished by 
mean methods. It is a serious evil that, at an age 
when vigour should be most keen, and the impetuous 
desire to carry his work carefully but quickly to its 
true finish the dominant passion of every pupil, we 
should find galling useless fetters, of mere microscopic 
exactitude and prim neatness, cramping their powers, 
leaving not a few, when the chains are removed, 
artistic cripples for life. 



To point out shortcomings and suggest no remedy 
is fruitless criticism. But, with diffidence, may it not 
be suggested that the in-breeding (to use a term 
familiar in its physiological sense) of so many years is 
beginning to tell. The masters as a rule are recruited 
from the pupils. Those who, by patient obedience to 
the unwritten law of the authorities, have obtained 
reward, naturally use efforts to impart the legend of 
success to those they in turn have to teach. Conse- 
quently, in the evolution of events, the qualities that 
are presumed to please the higher officials are nur- 
tured and enforced, while the qualities that they 
imagine fail to gain approval are disregarded. Thus a 
stereotyped course to be pursued in order to win the 
offered guerdon grows year by year more rigid in its 
dead sterility. The examiners are generally artists 
of ripe wisdom and experience, who beyond all doubt 
do their very best to pick out the worthiest things. 
But they are only the judges, not the teachers ; and 
if the labours of the vast army of qualified masters is 
so barren in result, affording neither ideal (if unprofit- 
able) art, nor commercially valuable design, it is time 
to consider the propriety of remodelling the whole 
institution before it becomes but a lifeless petrifaction. 
Possibly an infusion of new blood, drawn not merely 
from the personnel of the institution itself (although 
on its large staff there are numbers of capable artists to 
whom no syllable of the present censure could apply), 
or even from British citizens alone, but from both 
European and Oriental sources, would aid in infusing 
vitality. It may be that the sickness is not one affect- 
ing the constitution of the body, but that the low 
pulse of the patient is caused by too tightly-tied 
red tape, meagre, or over-rich nourishment, want of 
interest in contemporary taste, or other extraneous 
accidents ; but whatever be the diagnosis, the most 
unlearned can see that syncope is imminent unless 
timely restoratives be applied. 

Gleeson White. 

[N.B. — The opinions here expressed are of course 
the individual opinions of the writer. — Ed.] 



EXHIBITION OF THE WORKS OF THE SOCIETE DES 
PASTELLISTES FRANQAI^. 



FOR fifty centimes one can enjoy a delightful time 
with the French ' Paslellisles ' at the Paris Exhi- 
bition, and we need not fear being overcrowded in this 
small building, for, strange to say, people will pay ten 
times this price to look at vulgar dancing executed by 
barbarous natives (whom Daudet would call ' Les 
petits pays chauds '), but will refuse half a franc to see 
the best examples of the modern French pastels. 



This Society is not old, for it was only founded in 
1885 ; its first President is M. Roger Ballu, and it 
numbers but thirty members, some fourteen of whom 
belong also to the French Water-Colour Society. But 
though the society is not one of long standing, the use 
of pastels has for years been famous in France, and 
the art, which at one time threatened to die out, seems 
now to have taken a new lease of life both in France 



EXHIBITION OF THE WORKS OF THE SOCIETfi DES PASTELLISTES FRANgAIS 133 



and England. Last year we saw, for the first time, a 
Pastel Exhibition at the Grosvenor Gallery, both Eng- 
lish and foreign, and at that time some critics averred 
that two or three of the best things in that collection 
were executed by English artists. 

If we let this pass, we must, however, as we stand 
here in the French gallery of pastels, say at once that 
the French School unmistakably comes to the front when 
we compare the pastel workers as a whole. Happily, 
there need be no comparison here as far as special 
works are concerned, for all are by French artists, and 
we are struck by the excellency of the whole, and by 
the power displayed in the handling of a medium 
which possesses great beauty in skilful hands, but 
which may lead the artist into one of two hopeless 
bogs — woolliness, or unpardonable hideous hard- 
ness ! 

In this one room we are confronted with many 
styles of pastel drawings, and the critic must be 
pardoned (we should say commended, for the dog- 
matic critic, who loudly proclaims his universal know- 
ledge and his unerring judgment to the world, has 
often before this been proved wrong) if he feels 
puzzled when called upon to decide in what manner 
pastels should be manipulated so as to produce the 
best effect. 

We advisedly say ilic best and not the greatest effect, 
for each medium has, or should have, its own laws, its 
own capabilities, and its own possibilities, and above 
all it should not be imitative. In our opinion to say 
that a water-colour or a pastel 'looks just like an oil ' 
is certainly not high praise, and the artist who has 
aimed at this result will not be the greatest artist, nor 
will he have recognised the grand principle that each 
art, and each department of art, has its own vocabu- 
lary : just as a language is spoilt when the writer 
intei'lards it with many foreign words, so a picture 
loses its highest excellence when by a iour de force 
the medium employed in its composition is made to 
express a language foreign to itself. 

As we stand in this small gallery the above thoughts 
force themselves upon us, for in some of these pictures 
we see plainly that this principle has been violated, 
and that a few of the artists have striven to imitate 
oil-painting, and a few others have imagined the}' 
were working in water-colour, and so we miss some- 
thing of that indescribable and peculiar softness, which 
was not woolliness, of the older school of French 
Paslellisles, and in those of the English Russel, 
Knapton, etc. 

And yet let us make one more general remark. 
The chief reason of French excellence is that French 
artists, as a rule and not as an exception, learn to 
draw, or else, as in the case of Millet, are born with 
the power of drawing. 

The names of the members of this Pastel Exhibition 
are, most of them, those of well-known artists, artists who 
would have as great a horror of bad drawing or false 
perspective as an English scholar of the last generation 



had of a false quantity. It seems to us that pastel 
work hides less than other mediums any defects in 
draughtsmanship, so, as much care must be taken to 
avoid dirty tints, quick execution is absolutely 
necessary, as it contributes immensely to transparency. 
Now quick execution requires long practice, and re- 
quires also that both eye and hand should neither err 
nor hesitate. 

Beginning on the left hand as we enter the building, 
we notice at once Jules Machard's portraits. Look 
at a brunette with mauve background ; the finish is 
perfect, but we miss any idea of the ' lost and found,' 
— in fact the finish is too perfect, there is nothing left 
to the imagination, and for this reason we prefer his 
Bulles de Savon, a study full of grace. 

Now look out for Nozal's landscapes. Out of the 
six pictures he sends two are especially noticeable be- 
cause of their sunlight. Marine a Etretat and Moissons 
a Etretat : notice especially the latter. The quiet, 
green meadow, the red sun sinking over the pool 
where the mist is rising, a harvest-field on which the 
sun has really glowed, for we are still conscious of its 
heat though the evening is drawing on. Contrast his 
style with that of Blanche ; this latter is not at his 
best, and his pictures are hard and displeasing. 

Some of the best pastel portraits here are Levy's. 
Of the seven hung here all are good. Look at the 
brunette with pink and red bows. How well the'colour 
is contrasted ! the drawing is excellent, and the 
strength combined with delicacy shows what can be 
done with pastels. Levy's portraits tell us at once 
that the artist understands his medium, and makes 
the best of it in his own manner, for there is plenty of 
variety before us. 

Turning from Levy's portraits we come to the land- 
scapes of Lhermitte, and, in our opinion, the gem of 
the pastel landscapes is his pictui-e entitled La 
Baignade, Jin de Joiirnet/. It is unique in its working 
out, and the eifect is most pleasing. Here we get no 
smooth finish, no minute blending, but a bold truth- 
ful colouring which shows us that the artist has worked 
out-of-doors. Lhermitte is also a member of the 
Water-Colour Society, but none of his water-colours 
struck us so much as did this pastel landscape. In 
La Baignade we see two peasant women bathing their 
children. Of these six charming nude urchins some 
are in the water, some just out of it, all are real 
country children tanned by being always out-of-doors, 
and are full of life and health. A bright gleam of 
sunshine strikes the distant landscape, and tinges the 
village church and the red roofs of the cottages. 
Though the picture looks rough wheir looked at too 
close, from a distance the whole of the scene blends 
into beautiful lights and shades. The trees and the 
grass are worked in crisply, and yet there is none of 
the crude look which in some cases no distance dispels, 
and the whole is luminous without woolliness, and 
strong without being hard. The colours are laid on 
in juxtaposition, they blend because they follow a right 



134 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



sequence of colour, and not because they are mixed on 
the canvas like some culinary compound. 

Besides these merits it is seldom an artist gives us 
such perfect figure-drawing with such excellent land- 
scape, and in La Bciignitde we certainly find both. 

There is yet another picture by the same artist 
which deserves high praise, La Feillee. Here we see 
two women seated by a table on which is a lighted 
candle. One of tliem is reading. An old grand- 
mother is working, and another woman stands by her 
side. The whole grouping is perfect, and so is the 
effect of candle-light. 

Yon's landscapes come very near in merit to Lhei'- 
mitte, but we miss the fii-m crisp touch of the latter. 
Moiiieburt — aulomnc : we see the bend of the river, 
storm-clouds are blown along (Yon is accused of alwa3's 
giving us storm-clouds). On the left we see distant 
rain, an orange light breaks through the gloom, and 
the foreground is of a rich dark brown. This picture 
reminds us of one of Cox's water-colour landscapes. 
Yon's ChrijsaniM'mes are also very successful con- 
sidering the difficulty of giving transparency to flower 
texture. 

Madeleine Lemaire's name is well known as a water- 
colour artist, but she gives us a pastel study here 
which is worthy to be placed beside any of the men's 
work in the Exhibition. La Toilette shows us a back 
view of a woman's head and bust. The lady is look- 
ing at herself in the glass and we do not see her 
features, but the bend of the head, the delicate nape 
of the neck, the rich auburn hair, and the excellent 
drawing of the whole figure is admirable. The por- 
traits of Coquelin and his wife, also by her, are good, 
but do not possess as much merit as La Toilette. 

Opposite Madeleine Lemaire's pictures we at once 
notice Besnard's contributions. Every one knows 
Besnard's style ; he is one of that school which is 
trying to find a new path in the field of art. We can, 
besides, study him in the Water-Colour Society and in 
the exhibition of oil pictures close at hand, and thus 
examine all his various treatment of pigments. Like 
Claude Monet he seeks to represent atmospheric 
effects, but more in figures than in landscape, and 
even more than Monet does he belong to the Impres- 
sionist School. Here in pastels we have by him an 
excellent portrait of M. dc Los Rios, and in his Eclipse 
dc luiie we see a charming head of a woman, dark, 
soft, and undefined, whilst the eclipsed moon throws 
a bright yellow light round about. Besnard wants to 



express the poetry of light, and we tliank him for 
having some thoughts which do not run in the usual 
groove. 

We must not overlook Duez. All his pictures are 
worth studying, marine pieces, portraits, and flowers ; 
among these good things look at his charming head of 
a baby. 

Nor can we pass by Thevenot's portraits. His style, 
which again differs from the other portraits here, 
reminds one of our English Millais' portraits. Portrait 
de Madame B. is excellent in execution ; there is no 
smoothness and no woolliness. The work is bold, 
vigorous, and lifelike, but they would not suit the Im- 
pressionists. 

We have mentioned the most striking pictures of 
the Exhibition, but where there are so many good 
things one feels sorry that space prevents fuller men- 
tion of other good artists. 

John Lewis Brown's horses are admired by some 
amateurs ; he sends seven pictures here, but we cannot 
say much for them except that the artist can draw a 
horse. Madaine Cazin works in such slight tones that 
she is placed at a disadvantage in this Exhibition. 
Gerve.x does not shine here, but Montenard's foreign 
scenes are full of sunlight, and Lefebre gives us 
delightful colour in his Japonaise. 

From what has been said it will be seen that the 
French Paslellistes are a strong body, and that they 
have taken care not to swamp their Exhibition with 
inferior work. This is as it should be, and we might 
take the lesson home. In order to raise the standard 
of art let tlie standard be high. As pastel work 
is only now becoming popular in England, let its 
Exhibition reject all poor work, and we may thus hope 
to rival our neighbours. When all the work is up to 
a high standard we can then judge better about merits 
which are beyond mere draughtsmanship. Great work 
does not depend merely on style, and the medium 
used is of very little consequence (so that it be lasting). 
A true artist is seldom at a loss to express his meaning, 
because thought conquers technical difficulties ; but 
given the noble thought and the higli ideal, it is always 
interesting, and it will always be worth noticing, how 
these technical difficulties have been conquered. What 
saddens those who love Art truly and for lier own sake 
alone, is to see these same technical difficulties over- 
come by a so-called artist who has no great, worth}', or 
noble thoughts to express. 

EsME Stuart. 



A HEDGE SCHOOL IN AIRAINES, PICARDY 



135 




A HEDGE SCHOOL IN AIUAINES, PICARDY. 



O' 



N a Saturday 
afternoon about 
the middle of August 
we students arrived 
at Airaines, and on 
the same day by a 
later train came the 
professor. 

On Monday morn- 
ing at eight o'clock 
we all set out to work, 
armed with our paint- 
boxes, easels, etc., 
and two canvases. 

The pi'ocession was 
headed by the profes- 
sor and the student 
of oldest standing in 
the class, and the rest 
of us followed two 
and two. The pro- 
fessor was a Frenchi- 
fied Englishman, 
medallist of the 
Salon, and pretty 
well known in Paris art circles. The students were all 
women of various ages and nations, attired in various 
and very wonderful hats and blouses. 

The professor quickly turned off the village street 
down a little lane that followed the side of the river, 
a very small clean river that runs a hard-working course 
of mills and wash-houses. At the most uninteresting 
point on the lane the professor stopped and said, ' Here 
is one of the most beautiful pictures.' We all stopped, 
and the present chronicler, for one, looked in vain for 
the beautiful picture. It was a damp dull day, and 
the stems of a row of poplars 
and a square cottage did not 
look fascinating. They did 
make a good study, however, 
under the professor's direc- 
tion. In the middle of the 
road opposite this subject 
one of the students was 
planted, and in the course of 
the forenoon we were all 
placed with very definite in- 
sti'uctions as to our subject, 
of which we were each as- 
sured that it had been painted 
every year, and had figured 
in a distinguished manner at 
the Salon. These remarks 
may not be reassuring to the 
artist in search of novelty. 



but if it is an acknowledged fact that every stick and 
stone in a place has been painted, to have been 
painted very often gives it a certain distinction. 

We spent that day and the next painting, each 
on her own kailyard, roadside, or dung-heap. The 
professor was authoritative and inconsiderate as to the 
places in which he planted us. On the third day came 
the professor, and commented on our studies and any 
other work we chose to show him, mainly, as I gathered 
from after eonvei-sation, to the effect that they ' would 
not do.' 

The mornings after the first establishment became 
pretty monotonous. The object of carrying out two 
canvases was to paint a sunny subject on one and a grey- 
day subject on the other. We were on no account to 
attempt to paint sunshine on a grey day or vice versa. 
If the day were variable, we must try to keep our 
tempers and make the best of it. It never seemed 
difficult to find two subjects within a few yards of each 
other. The canvases and easels were left from day to 
day in cottages ; cottages that had seen many seasons' 
studies, and whose inmates blamed us severely if we 
had a tree more or a stab of railing less in our pictures 
than were in the pictures of those who had, gone 
before us. 

At twelve o'clock we went in to lunch and talk, — to 
talk with that freedom with which those talk who 
have never seen each other a month ago, and in all 
probability when a month is out will never see each 
other again. There is a cheery irresponsibility about 
such talk ; you need not be afraid of your effective 
stoi'ies being traced home to their faint originals, nor 
of your advanced opinions reaching the ears of 
scrupulous aunts. Whether you make friends or 
enemies does not matter, it will — or may — all be over 
in a month. 



im. 




136 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



When we had been a week together it was curious 
to recall the timid beginnings of this converse. The 
hesitating 'Where did you study ?' and ' How long?' 
One girl I remember, in reply to the last question, 
startled us all by answering ' nine years.' ' Nay,' said 
the cynic, ' I never yet heard of an art student who 
had studied more than two or three years. One does 
indeed hear that so-and-so, whose hair is now a little 
grey, was working in such an one's atelier ten years 
ago, but somehow when you come to ask her, she has 
only studied two or three years.' 



for society.' Our little society also included that too 
common type of art student, the duffer, a person 
the beginning of whose studies is lost in the mist of 
antiquity, and who works every minute of daylight 
without visible progress. Not without hope, however, 

for she repeatedly told us that the great X had 

called one of her studies a very pretty head, and that 
was a long time ago, and she was always getting on. 
Our Airaines duffer added a quaint dulness of com- 
prehension and difficulty of expressing herself to the 
usual qualities of the type. 




On cross-examination the record of the student of 
nine years' standing was reduced to as many months, 
that being the length of time she had actually worked 
in a Paris studio, and the only part of her studies that 
counted for anything in our eyes. 

She whom I have called the cynic was the most 
conspicuous figure among us. A lady of a certain age, 
considerable means and considerable good looks, she 
had lived and kept her eyes open in many lands. Her 
painting was conscientious, her talk brilliant, full of 
wit and mimicry and shrewd insight. To the question 
whether her talk did not startle some of her acquaint- 
ance, she once answered, ' Ah, it is the problem of my 
life to be clever enough for my work and stupid enough 



It was indeed curious that whilst a wandering life 
liad enabled the cynic to speak several languages, it 
had rendered the duffer incapable of speaking even 
her own. 

After lunch we scattered. The duffer either went 
straight out to work again, or employed herself in 
hammering nails into her canvases. The latter she 
seemed to consider a suitable employment for all 
leisure moments, and it says much for the good 
humour of the little colony that the only remarks 
ever made on this practice were indirect, and quite 
beyond the duffer's comprehension. Others retired 
to their rooms to lettei's, novels, or sleep, if the 
duffer's industry would allow it. 



A HEDGE SCHOOL IN AHIAINES, PICARDY 



137 



About two or three o'clock we sallied forth, alone or 
m couples, for sketching. Most of us tried to produce 
one or more oil sketches of subjects every afternoon. 
The professor looked through these on lesson day, and 
pointed out their good and bad points, telling us which 
were worth making studies of The duffer was an 
exception to the general rule, in that she did no 
sketches and took no afternoon tea. Her afternoons, 
like her mornings, were employed in steadily painting 
large sionboard-like studies. 



there. The English occupied the town for a consider- 
able time, and the Chevalier Bayard slept once in a 
room now much competed for by commercial travellei-s 
and art students. As proof of its former greatness 
Airaines has a ruined castle of small interest, a great 
fifteenth century church that seems to gather the 
poor little town about it as a lady gathers her skirts, 
and a small church of the eleventh or twelfth century, 
small and little used, but exceedingly picturesque, and 
an object of pilgrimage to architects. 




It is to these afternoon sketching expeditions that 1 
owe any knowledge I have of the town or country. 

As Airaines is not included in guide-books, I may 
give some guide-book information about it. It is a 
little old town which the uninitiated are apt to call a 
village. During the last three hundred years nothing, 
apparently, has been added to it, though something- 
may have been taken away. Once upon a time it was 
on the road from Paris to Calais. Its old inns, much 
as they now stand, have entertained many celebrities 
and stabled hundreds of horses ; tradition says that 
the silent little Rue d'Enfer was so called from the 
hurly-burly of horses and carriages there used to be 

VOL. II. 



The charm of .Viraines is due entirely to its being 
so excellently let alone. It lies in the hollow where 
the river Airaines is joined by two still smaller tribu- 
taries. There are water-mills, old, older, and oldest 
poplar trees, brown roofs and yellow walls. On week- 
days the women and children wear white caps and 
blue aprons, and the men blouses of all manner of 
soft, sesthetic shades. On Siuiday they all go into 
mourning. There are no villas nor iron railings, 
indeed no fences at all, 

The tourist is unknown at Airaines. Some twenty 
years ago our professor discovered the little place, and 
ever since a few artists have gone there every year. 

s 



138 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



By flint of having seen many pictures painted, the 
people have got to understand them a little. Their 
remarks are sometimes decidedly intelligent^ and they 
have a fair acquaintance with atelier slang, but the 
nature and habits of the art student remain a puzzle 
to them. We were generally spoken of as the appren- 
tices, and from time to time received friendly hints as 



straight into the living room ; opposite is the back 
door opening on the garden, and the garden, if pos- 
sible, extends to the river. On the river there is a 
little pier for drawing water, or, if the house be an 
important one, a shed for washing. 

Sometimes the garden is little more than a passage 
leading to the private pier, but sometimes it is a 




to the management of our master — going on strike, 
etc. One woman told me she had a dodge for me to 
make my forLune. It was photography, which she 
assured me must certainly be a better trade than 
painting, even proved it indeed beyond dispute. 
She had confided her dodge to the professor the year 
before, and fully expected to see him re-appear with 
a camera this season ; but as he had not availed him- 
self of her plan she felt justified in passing it on to 
me. 

The front door of an Airaines house generally opens 



delightful wilderness of fi'uit-trees hollyhocks, gourds, 
and weeds. Bee-hives, too, are a frequent feature. 

I have painted in more than one of these gardens, 
with the warm French sun shining down on it and the 
ripe fruit dropping round, whilst my courteous hostess 
for the day came out to look at me at intervals, and 
favoured me with cautious compliments on my work, 
or assured me that the revolution must come next 
year, for things were too bad to go on as they were 
going. 

Mary Rose Hill Burton. 



AN ARTISTS HAUIVT 



139 



AN ARTIST'S HAUNT; 



A CHAPTER FROM THE REMINISCENCES OF A PAINTER. 








IN a few days, under our eager hands, the house as- 
sumed a somewhat lordly aspect. The dirty and 
peeling walls were plastered and painted, the stone 
floors scraped, the doors gilded and painted with 
flowers, sea-pieces, smiling faces, and other symbolical 
figures. On the walls hung oriental carpets, armour, 
sketches, photographs, and pictures of various kinds, 
for the most part souvenirs of distant friends. An 
old sideboard, which at first was judged only fit for 
firewood, when disguised by ornamentation with gold 
lines, and covered with books and newspapers, became 
even imposing. At the windows hung long coloured 
curtains ; above the doors were arranged draperies 
of stuffs from the ' Ciociaria,' and rural instruments — 
bagpipes, fifes, cymbals, and the classical calascione 
(the ancient guitar of the poets). What more .' 
Miaio, the cat, to show his great satisfaction, came 
to rub himself against our legs, with his tail erect, 
whilst Papocchio the landlord, a good old man, very 
gouty, came every now and then, opening his little 
eyes wider and wider at the magnificence of our 
decorative talent. One who did not share in the general 
satisfaction was our servant, the good Domenica ; but 
so it is, nothing is perfect in this world. She saw with 



anger her little kingdom, the kitchen, neglected. 
And she was not wrong ; our rage for transform- 
ing had not left one little spark of brightness 
on her side of the house, where, however, it was 
most needed. She complained openly about it, 
interrupting our work to make us aware that she 
wanted dishes, and that the pans were full of holes. 
' We will eat off the newspapers,' we screamed to her 
from the top of our decorating scaffold — a table with 
a chair upon it. 

But the two inventions needed for the completion 
of the effect of the large room, which was dining- 
room, studio, ball-room, in one, were plates painted 
after the antique, and the decoration of the lai'ge 
frieze with musical notes. The first mentioned was 
the special work of Enrico (water-colourist, of whom 
moi-e hereafter), and the second was the work of the 
whole party. We had purchased some old earthen- 
ware for a few pence, and these, by means of skilful 
gilding inserted in the rough ornaments already exist- 
ing on them, were transformed by our friend the 
water-colourist into the most wonderful ' faience,' 
or truly remarkably Moorish ware. 

These new experiments occupied all the partition 
wall ; one of the plates, grander than the others, 
pierced in the middle, was suspended from the 
ceiling, and served as a canopy over the light. The 
frieze with musical signs cost us a whole day of 
patient labour, but we were compensated by its sue- 



140 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



'533B|fc«^ 



r:::^^ 




cess ns a very Kin^nhir cxiiinple (if hioiKtii wiill- 
paititlng, 

Between Ihe white ivoi'y ot the ceiling nnd the 
pearl-grey "f tlie whIIh were drawn five lines in red, 
which ran along like telegraph wires. Upon these 
lines, by strange accident, and to inspire ns with 
melodies and harmonies abundantly in the future, 
were painted notes and signs — ^notes and signs which 
no comjjoser in this world, or any other, would ever 
succeed in deciphering. Upon the lel't-hnnd w.all 
a place was given to English music — ugly little notes 
divided into bars, and looking like footprints of flies; 
on the front wall, the largest German nnisic, a very 
lemjiest, with nuieh black and an infinity of marks, 
pauses, slurs, quavers, and semi-quavers, which repre- 
sented an infernal noise. Wagner himself, in the 
midst of such an orchestral riot, would have remained 
unknown. On the right, Italian music, all feelini;, 
with some Tuelancholy notes and signs, which looked 
like waves of the sea. Verdi, the great Verdi 
would have blushed scarlet at the sighf nf such 
attempts ! 

Lastly, on the I'ourth Wiill, iippiisite to the (Jei'inan 
music — a sign of perpetual fuilagimlsm — French music ' 
This was another field of Sedan ; hut notes soniewlml 
strange were seen there of all shapes and sines. Sonic 
(perhapB in horror) were flying to take refuge in the 
ceiling; others, as if frightened, were escaping down- 
wards through the walls. In short, it was a rcvohilion 
of all law. () sublime author of Fiiiixl, nud genial 
eomjioser of ('(tniirii I to how many years of the 
galleys wmild you have condemned us ? 

So much for the general eH'cct; I do not say that it 
was perfectly (esthetic, but it called forth the apjiroval, 
the laughter, and the affected admiralion of the vai'ioiis 
classes of our visitors. 



'I'he large room had two windows, oiu- looked on 
the princi|)a1 place of the village (Piazza dcllc Villi-), 
the other looked to the moimtains, these beautiful 
hills of the ' Ciociaria,' so wild, and also so picturesque. 
From the window that overlooked the Pio/za, the 
view was not so attractive, but had a certain compen- 
sating interest. Mouses |)lanled on the right and left, 
riddled with holes, through which the rain and the 
wind penetrated ns they liked. Unequal pavement, 
like the sea in a tempest, spread over with black mud 
ill which were mixed up together myriads of hens, 
whole herds of pigs, and multitudes of young children, 
whose apjiearance I dare not describe. Some bold 
types of peasantry wandered about in thig mess with 
much gravity, somewhat proud of their native dirt ; 
whilst the women, often beautiful and strong, seated 
in gi'oujis on the threshold of tlie houses, idly basked 
111 the sunshine like lizards, or continued their gossip 
with each other in the strange and melodious dialect 
of the ' Ciociaro.' 

Indeed one would not pass a (pinrtcr of an hour 
badly at this window-seat. The spectacle was varied, 
but the continual chorus of grunting ])igs, braying 
asses, and crying oliildren wos in the end wearisome ; 
and further, there came certain puffs of warm air 
mixed with such a perfume, that noses the least 
sensitive, or artists less convinced of the beaiilif'iil in 
the hideous, would have rebelled against. 

But, however, nil this was Inevitable : our (|iiarter8 
were there, among these customs, in the company of 
these wild types and of these filthy herds. Every 
longing for the civilised world from our world, would 
be considered a disgrace to our ambitions and our 
ideals. We had adapted the large room to our wants, 
possibly to our habits, in order to have a little nest of 
our own amidst the S(|ualor and discomfort. After 
the hours of work, which kept us tied all day, were 
over, we returned for dinner at the fall of evening, 
some problematical dinners of which Pythagoras knew 
something. The later hours which (ireceded our re- 
tiring to our rooms were passed in our happiest 




AN .\IM1S'I"S IIAI'N'I' 



\l\ 



wiiy. AdiiHo, 111!' sciil|iloi', Willi Ills sIpdii;^- \'(ii.T i;il lici',' I <>(iiiclii(l(il , ■ I li.il I lir niniiiiir cil' our I'l'iisl luis 

I lin\r IHVCI' I'liinKl In wli.'il I rdilld ('()i\i|i;nr lli.il n<il I'ciU'llcd Illcm yv\ I' 

voii'i, il w.is NO lii'Miilirn! .'Mill iiowci'l'iil AdoH'o llicn I )oiiiciilcii iippcaivd id llir liooi' ol' the kilidicii. 

wont lliroim'li Ills liilci-iiiiii.'dilc niiisicMl r(|i(rloiii', l\ii\ llij^', |iirlin|)S, glK^HHCMJ \vli:il xviis >fl)inj{ on. In 

wlillsl l'',iirii'o or I .'icconipMiiii'il liiin on (lie ■•nilfn', lici' cliissicid I'dslinno of llic licindil'iil ' ( iocim-ii,' 

Soniclinus I lie Ijirjrc room was lriinsronnf<l lido iin slic slood posi'd, willi :i sinoUiny spoon In her 

Ai'iuliniy ol' llic l''inc Arls ; Ilicn wi; )nit iisidc llic IiimkIs, 

l;d)l(s Mild ili;iirs, I )oin<'nicii — llic H'ood iiiul iniilli. 'I'licrc rcniiii I ii liisl Id Icr In rend ; if il, {il,so liiilcd 

r.'irioiis I )oini'iiic;i, iiiollii'r, scrv.'inl, 8l'Willf(-U)ni(l, iinil lis, llii' rcsliviil would liccoiiic loo i.lrii'lly |il'ivill;c. 
cook dressed licrscll' iiiiil licciiiiic Ilir old iiiucli ' ( looil liicU iil hisl !' cried .Adolfo ; ' lierc is ,'il iciisl 

prized model. one ! ' 

Our rooms were iiiMnf;'iiriiled on llic I.Mli Novcnilier 'I'liis iiiir \\i\s 1 1™, il sym|iMlllcllc son ol' Alliioii, 

IHH I,<'llcrs of liiviliilion wi'rc wrillcn; {fnindly wlioiii soiiw monllis spent log't'lhcr liiid drnwn lo ns 

worded I'irciilnrs were scjillcrcd lo llie I'oiir winds; willi Iriie lies ol' iiU'cclion. He .'iniioiinccd. Iiow- 

I'rom lioiiic spcelid iiii'enis (U'spiilelieil lo us every I'Ver, lliiil ' ii fliisU of 'riiseilli wine, mid ii fry ol' 

kind of dninly I'or the liiiilc. Imii^ine lo y<MM'Nelvcs, deviUisii (iiclopiis) 



■*■• 



^ ^» 't 




there were even butler mid siirdiiics from Nmitcs I 
We were in ii very I'cver of prepiiriilion, in which every 
one of IIS (employed nil liiswils .'iiid his lime ,'iiiil 
his tiwr WHS iilso his money ! 

The (liiy lixed, llier<' was greal dispiiliiij; alioiil 
cilttinfi; down the inimher of invilalions. I )iiiiieiiic,i, 
in llic kitchen, scolded lill she was in a I'cver. In 
(M'dcr to coiicilialc her, we cai'ricd our gencrosily so 
far as to buy two new pmis I'or her, and to ask I he 
loan of a dozen plalcs from llic mayor ol' I lie \ill;ij;e. 
,Slie was radiant ! At (^Ittvcn o'clock in llic roreiioon, 
the pi)st hour, a perfect sliowcr of letters poured from 
llie horny iiaiids of llic poslman. We opened llicin 
eiif^crly, rcadiiin' I wo al oiiei' for hasic, hut none of us 
dared iitlcr a syllalile. . . . ( )iir iiivile<l quests, in 
studied phrases, willi odious evasions, exeiiscil lliem- 
selves, ' could nol .Miccpl 

' Uiifiralel'id -' sighed Adolfo. ' Tliev have 

no sense of hospitality,' nnn'miircd l'',iirico. • I fear 



' 'I'liese l'',nj<lish ! ' sii{lied l''.iirieo, ' have an envialili' 
inlimiiey willi money ! ' 

A I I 111 re o'clock we ordered an escort of honour lo 
luecl our invilcd friend. It was lo eoiisisl of J'',iirico, 
m\self. llic miilclccr. I wo models IlicmosI inliiiiaty— 
and four mules. .Adnll'o.in these days recovering' from 
a dislocation of llie Icl'l \rff, slaycd in Ihc house lo 
<lirecl Ihc preparations for the I'casI, 

At four o'clock we were al lloviaiio. and .'il 1."., (he 
Irain arrived, and our ^ood II l'< II inlo our arms, 

laden witil a large llagoii, anil a heavy parcel sincllliii( 
id' sea-w<'ed. We jn'rccded him with cheers, with 
tears, and prolon/^ed emhraces, whilst his I'ellow- 
passeng'crs slrelchi'd their heads out of Ihc carriage 

windows lik(! liens in i p to ask in I urn what 

was thcMueaning of this joyous luiimll. 

'I'owardH evening we arrived, and our sleeils an 
iioiiiieed IhcmselveH hy their tramping. Our rooms, 
brillimitly lighted, threw a. wiuiderfiil blaze of light 



142 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



from the windows. H , amazed, but always a true 

Englishman, lamented the absence of his dress coat. " 

U])stairs on the landing, Adolfo, wrapped in an 
enormous bat-coloured cloak, waved what I might 
almost call his assistant leg, a knotty stick, while he 
sang 'God save the Queen.' 

At the appearance of the gran xa/ii, our guest ojjened 
his eyes wide at the sight of such oriental luxury, and 
forgetting he was in Italy, gave forth a long exclama- 
tion in his native tongue, which i-emained there- 
fore an enigma to us ! In truth, it was an imposing 
reception. 



soup-tureen (of mutton broth), unanimous applause 
burst forth. Never, I believe, had four voices shown 
such vigorous vocal power. 

At the stewed cuttlefish, Adolfo, forgetting his leg, 
notwithstanding its pain, actually turned to embrace 
every one (including Domenica). 

At the chickens — perhaps in lamentation, like Lucul- 
his and Trimalcione — or saddened by the thought of 
such extravagance — tears began to gather. 

At the salad, by a pathological phenomenon fre- 
quent in similar cases, Enrico and I felt in need of 
a little air. 




The vieiiii was thus composed: — Hors d'a'uvrcx, 
sardines with butter, and butter with toast, mutton 
broth, boiled mutton served with potatoes and 
butter. Three (Jkrce I say) roast chickens, a luxury 
the like of which we would not hear of again. 
Devilfish fried and stewed; salad, made with lamp 
oil (Enrico, indeed, proposed to supply melted butter 
for it). Dessert — truly I do not think it could be 
called exactly a dex.icii. . . . But we made up for 
deficiencies skilfully with thousands of sweet things, 
the pleasures of intimacy and friendship, and so on. 

At the appearance of Domenica with the steaming 



At dessert, what should happen but the sight of a 
plate, thrown up by an unknown hand, turning over 
gracefully in the air until it came against the wall. 
This we found a little joke, and in spite of the 
clamour of Domenica, it was imitated. It must have 
been a strange enough sight' that of plates and 
glasses flying about over our heads and breaking 
against each other in their flight. In a few minutes 
the floor was covered with their fragments. 

Those who were below, the little family of the 
landlord, ran in a body to see what was the matter. 
Thev were afraid it was a quarrel. We calmed them 



AN ARTIST'S HAUNT 



143 



quickly, and ex- 
plained to them 
in good Italian that 
this game with 
plates was an Enji'- 
lish jest, a kind of 
' toast ' which fol- 
lowed a grand feast. 
Among those who 
had gathered to- 
gether in alarm the 
fair sex was largely 
represented. There 
was Pasqua - Rosa, 
the mother ; Con- 
cettino, the daugh- 
ter ; and Angela, 
the servant, whom 
Adolfo had the im- 
pudence to ask to 
amuse him by teach- 
ing him the sallar- 
cUo (the dance of 
the ' Ciociaro'). 

They consented, 

and, in less time 

than I can tell, put 

aside the table, took hold of the guitar and the 

cymbals, and began the dance. 

In these countries, as in those of the Mohammedans, 
there is no sound that has such magnetic attraction as 
the clashing of cymbals. So in a short time other 
dancers came in, until the room was full of them. It 
was difficult to dance, but our courage increased and 
supported us through all. 

H , in a high collar and black cravat, had 

Concettina for a partner ; he made his turns and pirou- 
ettes with much solemnity. Enrico, with his thin 
figure, in stature two spans taller than necessarj', 
nearly bent himself double in bowing to his partner, 
Agostina, a dark star of Capicoruo ! Adolfo, in a 
corner, beat time, pounding the pieces of china and 
glass to powder with his stick. Several times he had 
attempted to dance on one leg, but we all drove him 




back to his corner for fear of a dislocation of the 
other leg. In my turn I contributed my best per- 
formance on the guitar, and invited the idle women 
to take a turn with me. 

Until two o'clock in the morning the dancing was 
carried on with little variation. Adolfo, declaring he 
had pain in his weak leg, lay down under the table 
and was snoring there. The greater number of the 
dancers having disappeared, Enrico took the oppor- 
tunity of casting sheep's eyes at Agostina. H 

moderately English by this time, had taken off his 
jacket and continued his pirouetting with Domenica. 
It was an original contrast between the spotless white 
of his shirt, the irreproachable cut of his clothing, 
and the bright-coloured handkerchief and the iialf- 
barbarous necklace of his partner; he in his shining 
shoes, she in her sandals. This festival, of which the 
walls might tell something, had nevertheless its 
blemishes : do what we could, puzzle our brains as 
we might with many questions, not one of us, includ- 
ing the good H himself, who had by the end of 

the evening become thoroughly Italian, even ' Ciociaro,' 




could tell what he meant. That is why the brightest 
page of his adventures has never been published. 

AllNALDO FF.nnAGUTI. 

( rraiislalcdfroiii thi Italian by M. C. C. C. ) 




14.4 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



THE WAGNER FESTIVAL AT EAIREUTH. 



II. 



IN last montli's number of this Review I recorded 
the most striking of the impressions made on 
those who visit Baireuth by the unusual perfection of 
the conditions under which the music-dramas are 
presented. It will be interesting to inquire what 
fresh light is thrown by these impressions on the value 
of the Wagnerian theories and methods. 

It has been made a reproach to Wagner's music that 
it requires so many extraneous aids for its adequate 
production ; but such a criticism shows an entire mis- 
conception of what his art really is. Wagner claims 
to be the pioneer in a new realm of aesthetics, the 
inventor of a new art-form, the music-drama, and it is 
in this character that he must be accepted or rejected. 
He is to be judged, not as a musician or as a poet, but 
as a composer of music and of poetry for the definite 
purpose of the music-drama, and also as a dramatist 
and stage-manager in the conception and execution of 
the general plan. All these qualities are not of course 
necessarily united in the same person, and indeed it 
may be long before another genius arises who could 
venture to fill such various offices ; but whether the 
finished product come from the hands of one or of 
several, it must in every case be judged as a whole. 
In this aspect criticism is restricted within definite 
limits. If it be granted that the music-drama is a 
possible form of art, its excellence must depend on 
the success with which each of the separate functions 
is performed in relation to the general effect. The 
questions to be answered are these : Has the subject 
been well chosen ? is the treatment skilful ? are the 
music and the words well adapted to each other, and 
are they expressive of the dramatic purpose .' 

To answer these questions fully in regard to Wagner's 
total work is impossible within the limits of the present 
paper, and would lead us beyond the evidence afforded 
by this year's festival. I can only offer some partial 
answers suggested by the latest experience. Certain 
parts of the subject must be altogether omitted. In 
an article on 'The Place of Poetry in the Music- 
Drama' (Scotlixh Art Review, December 1888), I have 
already dealt with the literary value of Wagner's 
libretti, and the question of the power and expressive- 
ness of his music is one which can scarcely be brought 
within the sphere of logical argument. I shall confine 
myself to a single issue, of the kind most open to 
reasoned criticism: How far has Wagner attained 
success as a dramatist in the plays which were per- 
formed at the recent festival .'' 

In regard to choice of subject, it is well known that 
Wagner considered mythology the true field of the 



music drama, as affording the atmosphere ot idealism 
so favourable to art, and admitting a freedom of treat- 
ment incompatible with faithfulness to historic fact. 
Die Meislersinger von Niirnberg forms such a happy 
exception to this rule that one is tempted to wish that 
he had departed from it more frequentl}', and that he 
had applied to some weighty historical subject the art 
which has found such a beautiful expression in this 
genial comedy. But it may readily be recognised how 
real the difficulties of such an attempt must be, and 
how skilfully they have been avoided in Die Meisler- 
singer. The spirit of comedy in itself offers a medium 
for idealistic treatment, where success is much more 
easily attained than would be the case with a tragic 
motive, which demands a heightened intensity of 
interest not often to be found in history, except in 
cases where general familiarity with the facts makes 
an artistic arrangement of them well-nigh impossible. 
Even within the sphere of comedy, the choice of a 
subject for a mode of art so necessarily idealistic as the 
music-drama is more restricted than may at first sight 
appear. The theme of love, unless its course be very 
far from smooth, which would not be proper to true 
comedy, can scarcely be lent sufficient importance to 
constitute the central motive, though the romantic 
element it contributes must if possible be secured by 
its close association with the main interest. The chief 
figure must be heroic in mould, while at the same 
time his heroism must be of the sympathetic kind 
which will blend readily with the lighter elements of 
the drama, and his portrait must transcend the limita- 
tions of historic fact without materially conflicting with 
the records of his personality. There can be little 
controversy as to the eminent degree in which all these 
conditions are fulfilled by the figure of Hans Sachs, 
the cobbler, who was also a poet and musician, the 
lai-ge-hearted citizen with his generous enthusiasm for 
art, his wise sympathj' with all noble endeavour, and 
his genial tolerance of the self-conceit which brings its 
own punishment. The happiness of dramatic insight 
which led Wagner to such a choice is no less manifest 
in the skill with which the various threads of his story 
are interwoven, so that one interest is relieved by 
another, Walther and Eva finding their happiness, and 
Beckmesser his discomfiture, by a process of events 
which is no less truly natural that it is directed by the 
hand of Hans Sachs. It would be a superfluous task to 
dwell further on the beauties of this play, to trace the 
hand of the artist in the arrangement of its various 
scenes and situations. The strength of portraiture 
shown in the figures of Sachs and Beckmesser has 



THE WAGNER FESTIVAL AT BAIREUTH 



145 



been so universally acknowledged, the charm of the 
story has been effectively proved to so many audiences, 
that the critic has little to do but to acquiesce in the 
general verdict. One fault the play undoubtedly has, 
the fault of excessive length. If this were solely the 
result of abundant material, demanding adequate ex- 
pression, only a relative judgment would be possible. 
The powers of endurance in an audience are no fixed 
quantity ; much depends on the conditions of perform- 
ance and other variable elements. But if it be possible 
to point to definite scenes which, as it were, ' hang 
fire,' where the development of the action is not in due 
proportion to the time and interest they demand, then 
a flaw must be admitted in the dramatic workmanship. 
I think it will be generally allowed that in the first act 
of Die Mcislcniiiger there are one or two such scenes, 
and that the drama as a whole would gain by their 
curtailment. 

Passing to the second of the festival plays, Tristan 
mid Isolde, we find ourselves in a very different atmo- 
sphere. From the brightness and iidivete of mediaeval 
burgher life we are plunged into the tragic pathos of 
elemental passion, into the gloomy shadow of the con- 
flict between fate and human desire. Here is no mere 
pleasant picture for the delight of the eye and the 
comfort of the heart, but a lurid gleam of light, filling 
the senses indeed to the full, but charged with a 
weightier message to the soul. What is the ethical 
significance of the story .'' Intrusted by King Mark 
with the hard duty of bringing to him as a bride one 
whom he himself had loved, Tristan sacrifices his 
passion on the shrine of honour and knightly service, 
and is prepared to die rather than break his faith, 
when the magic love-potion masters his will, and 
drives him by irresistible sway through deceit and 
disgrace along the mad current of blind desire, till 
his death anticipates any other unravelling of fate. 

What is the moral of it all ? It may be said that 
this is an irrelevant question, that art has nothing to 
do with ethics. That is a shallow philosophy. It is 
the function of art to clothe truth in forms of beauty ; 
and if either the truth or the beauty be wanting, the 
art is false and is doomed to perish. If there be not 
literal truth to historic fact, there must at least be the 
higher truth to the great realities of the world and of 
life. The art which helps to teach no useful lesson is 
not art in any worthy sense. That there is beauty in 
Tristan und Isolde, rare and wonderful beauty, no one 
will deny. What of its truth ? Are we to look on it 
as the mere glorification of unhallowed love ? Surely 
a deeper and worthier interpretation is the true one. 
The legend represents a blending of the fatalism 
characteristic of ancient thought with the more 
modern ideas of amorous passion introduced in the 
days of chivalry. From the beginning of time the 
conception of destiny had formed a large part of the 
experience of man, but the idea of a destiny in his 
own nature, determining his course from within, was 
one slowly reached and applied with difficulty to the 
vol.. 11. 



various relations of life. The tyranny of love, follow- 
ing on gradual and subtle changes in the position of 
women, was one of the aspects under which the yoke 
of this inward destiny was eventually recognised, and 
however crudely its action was at first referred to out- 
ward causes, such as love-potions and other magic 
influences, it represents historically the first definite 
approach to the modern doctrine that true marriage 
is only possible where love is free. The story of 
Tristan und Isolde, if divested of its imaginative and 
romantic embellishments, may be described bluntly 
as a vindication of ' elective affinities,' a protest against 
the niariage de convenance. It is an artistic expression 
of the scientific truth that nature avenges every arbi- 
trary interference with the instincts which guard the 
preservation of the race ; that if the promptings of 
natural sympathy be overruled by the claims of ambi- 
tion or convenience, a stern retribution will come 
sooner or later. 

For the sake of those who may think it a degrada- 
tion to art to be measured by its scientific value, I 
hasten to add that I am not charging Wagner with 
the heinous crime of having any such purpose in view 
in his choice of this story. It is of course the privilege 
of the artist to create without having any conscious 
purpose at all, and to select his subjects as the spirit 
moves him. But I claim that the secret of the at- 
tractive power of the legend of Tiislan und Isolde, to 
the poet and to those for whom he transfigures it, lies 
in its deep social significance as the embodiment of an 
all-important scientific truth. 

In itself, indeed, the intuition which leads the poet 
to choose material of permanent interest and value is 
no more than a part of the necessary equipment ; the 
true quality of dramatic genius must be shown in the 
power to endow it with a living form, to present it 
with a convincing force. The evidence of success in 
a music-drama, as in every other work of art, must 
always be largely subjective and personal, but it would 
not be hard to show from the postulates of all reason- 
able criticism how in Wagner's version the present 
theme has gained in every point where his hand may 
be traced, not only in the broader and more obvious 
outlines, but notably in the more delicate nuances, 
which are none the less vital to the development of 
the drama. It will be enough to mention in illustra- 
tion of this unfailing rightness the indication of the 
subtle changes of mood and temper in Isolde in the 
opening scenes, in contrast to her blind unswerving 
passion after the love-potion has deadened her will. 
It requires a master-mind to give fitting dramatic 
expression to a psychological analysis so penetrating. 

An interesting question is raised by the plot of 
Tristan und Isolde in regard to the use of the super- 
natural in fiction generally, and in the music-di-ama 
in particular. It will be granted that in a work of art 
where the outward circumstances of the action come 
into the sphere of modern life, the introduction of 
supernatural effects is no longer a part of legitimate 

T 



146 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



treatment. If Shakespeare had writteu in the nine- 
teenth centurj', there is little doubt that the ghost of 
Hamlet's father -(v-ould have been replaced by some 
other artistic device more in harmony with contem- 
porary ideas of probability. It is a further step, which 
has not yet quite been reached, to impose the same 
standard in the case of themes which have a close 
relation to modern thought and feeling, even where 
the surroundings are legendary or mjthical. There 
must be many hearers of Tristan und Isolde who have 
felt that the incident of the love-potion formed a 
serious detraction from the genuine human interest of 
the story. It weakens the illusion that we are wit- 
nessing the struggle of beings subject to the same 
conditions and influences as ourselves. If we are in a 
world of magic where anything may happen and where 
imagination does not rest on experience^ what is the 
use of going any further ? Yet the love-potion is no 
mere accessory of the plot ; it represents the element 
of fate, which is essential to its significance. Could 
this element have been represented othersvise .' I 
have suggested above that the love-potion is a symbol 
of the destiny that lies in character and disposition, 
and may overrule the despotism of outward circum- 
stance. It may seem that the symbol might have 
been franklj- discarded for the reality, that the lovers 
might have been made to find their passion irresistible 
without the aid of supernatural machineiy. But a 
little reflection will show the difficulties of such a 
change. It requires the recognition of a force beyond 
all conceivable resistance to avoid alienating our sym- 
pathy from the hero in his breach of knightlj' faith, 
and without arousing a sympathetic interest, the story 
of his love could not have been invested with ideal 
beauty. Only b}' lessening the obligation to King 
Mark to the point where excuse might be admitted 
without a strain on our sympathy could this difficulty 
be overcome, and so considerable a change would intro- 
duce a complexity of motive almost be3'ond the neces- 
saiy limits of dramatic art. On the whole I think it 
must be decided that the love-potion, however much 
its introduction may be regretted, is justified b}- the 
necessities of the position. A further point must be 
considered. The more ideaHstic the form of art, the 
more possible does it become to tax the imagination 
bj' an appeal to effects beyond the bounds of experi- 
ence ; and in this aspect the music-drama, which com- 
bines the transfiguring influences of several arts, may 
trust to devices that would be disallowed on the 
ordinar)' stage. 

There are people who find Tristan und Isolde ' cloy- 
ing,' 'unhealthy,' having a •' flavour of disease.' The 
vagueness of such a criticism makes it impossible to 
meet it except by offering contraiy evidence. For 
myself I can only account for such a feeling as a 
phase of the puritanic spirit which condemns all 
sensuous passion as a thing unholy, or at least as a 
weakness which it is almost a shame to avow and a 
sin to glorify. I do not denj- that the physical aspect 



of love may be unduly emphasised in art, but in the 
present case, where the heroic elements in the char- 
acters of the lovers have been sufficiently portrayed 
or suggested to adjust the balance in our conception 
of them, and whei-e the music by its idealising influ- 
ence refines and purifies the theme, as expressive music 
can never fail to do, I cannot even imagine by what 
signs the truth of such a charge could be established. 

Turning to Parsifal, we are confronted again by some 
of the critical problems that have been already dis- 
cussed. The use of the supernatural is one of these, 
but here the defence in this respect must rest on 
different grounds, for there is no question of meeting 
the exigencies of dramatic development. As the 
theme is not one which is in any sense distinctly 
modern either in sentiment or in the surroundings of 
place and time, there is no jar on the sense of con- 
gruity in the magical apphances which abound in the 
play. We are in an atmosphere of symbolism, and the 
drama is accepted as a parable. Its interest and 
power depend, apart from the artistic treatment, on 
the grandeur of the motive, on the spiritual insight 
shown in the poet's presentment of it, and on his suc- 
cess in animatmg the symbols of historic faith for the 
expression of eternal truths. AVagner was thus not 
only comparativel}- free in his choice of mechanism, 
but was almost led into the use of miracle as an appro- 
priate element of the dramatic setting. 

The ordinary philistine criticism of Parsifal, that it 
degrades sacred things by the introduction of incidents 
associated in most minds with Christian rites, is one 
which scarcely deserves serious notice. The objection 
could never be raised by any who had seen and heard 
the play, for in an atmosphere of such solemnity the 
idea of degradation is barely conceivable. Nor can it 
be founded on the opinion that the mysteries of the 
Christian faith are no fit subjects for imaginative treat- 
ment ; a charge which Milton and Bunyan have 
escaped cannot now be brought against Wagner. 
The feeling is based on a sense of incongruitj- between 
religion and the stage, which, in spite of a knowledge 
of their original close relation, still remains in this 
country — and with some apparent reasons — an accepted 
article of the conventional creeds. For this unfor- 
tunate superstition we have of course to thank the 
excesses of the Puritan movement and of the Restora- 
tion reaction. Those who are able to read the history 
of the drama dispassionately count it one of Wagner's 
greatest achievements to have helped so much in 
removing from the stage the reproach of being worldly 
and in-eligious. It must be granted indeed that the 
general distrust of sacred motives as dramatic material 
is justified in so far as it expresses a fear of submitting 
the most ideal themes to unworthy conditions of per- 
formance ; but clearly the right line for such a protest 
to take is to demand a standard of presentation in 
keeping with the dignity of the subject. 

In regard to construction Parsifal labours under the 
difficulty, incidental to the allegorical form, of develop- 



AN IMPRESSION OF VICTOR HUGO'S HOUSE 



147 



ing the natural dramatic action in harmony with the 
scheme of thought which it symbolises, and Wagner's 
success in this respect must be judged rather by what 
he has achieved than by what he has failed to achieve. 
There are one or two points on which a word may be 
said towards a true appreciation of the drama. What 
is the relation of Kundry to the fulfilment of Parsifal's 
mission ? How are we to interpret the prophecy of 
the coming Saviour as ' Der reine Thor, durcli Mitleid 
wissend ? ' I read in it an expression of the truths that 
the redemption of man is to be worked out from 
within, that those only can bear a worthy part in it 
whose record is free from stain, that the strength of a 
noble nature must be tried in the fire of temptation, 
that wisdom comes to the pure in heai-t through the 
channels of love. Parsifal is unconscious of his power 
to triumph over evil until Kundry's kiss, stirring him 
to the depths of his being, fills his soul with the 
knowledge of good and evil that comes from the taste 
of the forbidden fruit, while it reveals to him the self- 
mastery which sympathy alone can give to those who 
are chosen for great deeds by the destiny of a noble 
inheritance. 

It has been objected that the drama has no effective 
climax, that the interest is unduly anticipated in the 
first act. It is true that the last act has no striking 
surprise in spectacle or action, but I can see no fault 
of artistic judgment in the repetition of the grail scene. 
There are more subtle kinds of climax than those 
which appeal to the outward eye and ear, and there is 



surely here, apart from the details of the action, a 
sense of fulfilment after weary and arduous prepara- 
tion, a sympathetic exultation in the triumph over evil 
and sin, which is of the essence of a real climax in 
feeling. The scene moreover has, in the last act, an 
important element of difference in the agonised refusal 
of Arafortas to yield to the passionate appeal of the 
knights to uncover the grail, — a situation which most 
effectively heightens the interest of the dramatic 
solution. 

It would be too much to say that Parsifal shows at 
every point the irresistible continuit}', the quality of 
inemlabk'ne.is which is to be found in Tiislun mid Isolde 
for example, and which is the unfailing test of the 
highest dramatic genius. But this may only mean 
that in a work of so vast an intellectual and moral 
compass, shadowing forth conceptions of the deepest 
significance, and probing to the core the inmost 
mysteries of the spiritual life, the comparative strange- 
ness of the endeavour and the complexity of the issues 
make an immediate appreciation impossible. It is no 
reproach, but rather a tribute of praise, to a music- 
drama if it be found that its inner meaning becomes 
clearer after repeated hearings and serious study. 
Even if the deliberate judgment be lacking in the 
confidence which the highest art inspires, it will be 
well to bear in mind that the essential element of a 
final criticism is wanting here, the possibility of 
comparison, for as an artistic whole Parsifal as yet 
stands alone. James Oi.iphant. 



AN IMPRESSION OF VICTOR HUGO'S HOUSE. 



FEW who set foot on the rockbound Guernsey 
land can depart without seeing the old unlovely 
house at Hauteville, where lived and wrote for so 
many years, in that half English, half French atmo- 
sphere, the republican, poet, and novelist — Victor 
Hugo. In that neutral territory (veritably a literary 
No Man's Land) he stayed for many years, far from 
the himi of European politics and party strife, yet 
near enough to see, in fair weather, his loved Nor- 
mandy ghmmering faint and white on the eastern 
horizon ; the mere sight of its coast, which often lay a 
shadowy thing upon the sky, the soft patois of the 
natives, and the mixed nomenclature of streets and 
houses — probably more French sounding in those days 
than they are now — compensating in some sort for his 
exile fi'om Paris. 

It fell out that in such musings as these, one 
February afternoon, my friend and I, climbing the . 
narrow ways cut in the steep streets of St. Peterport, 
at last reached tlie sombre, and — must it be confessed 
— commonplace-looking house on the hill, with its dull 
red blinds and tiny fore-coin-t, ovei-cast by trim and 



joyless trees, where Hugo, in his small study at the top 
of the house, swept in at a glance sky and sea as far 
as France. 

' Yes,' said the Guernsey maiden, opening the door 
and I'eplying to our inquiries, ' Yes, visitors are allowed 
to see the house between two and four.' In a moment 
the door was closed, and we were standing in an 
interior, gloomier even than the unpropitious exterior 
had promised. There was a certain quaintness in 
these muffled, carpet-hung balustrades and walls and 
tapestried ceilings, a quaintness and irregularity not 
altogether pleasing or sane, suggesting the environ- 
ment of one who had dreamed out existence too much 
in accord with the grim and bizarre fancyings of an 
intense and morbid nature. To leave the thin cool air, 
pungent with north-westerly freshness and saline force, 
to grope in darkness of upholsterers' making, produced 
a sensation as oppressive as might be had if one were 
to live perennially in a museum of barbai'ic and curious 
antiquities outside all human contact. Even the sug- 
gestion ot Eastern abatidoit. conveyed by those rich 
cushions and enticing divans of oriental tapestry. 



148 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



could scarce compensate for the Wardour Street aspect 
of the sombre oak furniture, black with 'age and polish, 
too plentiful and crowded together to be effective, the 
ancient curios of barbaric idols and gods, the uncouth 
carving painted with bright primitive tints of red and 
green. What added most to the sepulchral look of 
things were the ceilings, which were, as I remarked, 
covered with tapestry and pieced out, where necessary, 
with oak, or painted work, or even by shining tiles, 
which, however, had their value in a quaint Dutch 
way, because they caught up a measure of outside 
light and freshness, reflecting its freedom again from 
their transparent surfaces into the dark old rooms. 
Even more felicitous, one felt, were the pale golden- 
hearted frisias — huddled into old pots and vases — 
blossoms waxen and fragile enough for that wintry 
day, that shed a clearness along the polished surfaces, 
carven ledges, and arabesques, accidental high notes 
of colour that glimmered in unexpected places like 
half-buried snow and gold. Outside, under the red 
blinds, could be seen a garden full of spring-like 
greenness sloping in the direction of a brown, bleak 
hill ; tropical trees with broad reddish leaves and lian- 
pus branches, or with limp arrowy shiny leaves, palm- 
like in growth, seemed oddly at variance with the 
homelier varieties of northern origin ; yellow crocuses 
bordered the path, while ivy, laurel, and smooth lawns 
were cunningly interspersed, and a space of grey, even 
colour just told where the sea lay. 

A pleasant-faced elderly lady with white hair walked 
rapidly up the garden path and disappeared into the 
house. ' Ah, that is madame,' said the maid, with the 
prettiest accent imaginable; 'you will excuse me for 
a moment.' Being thus left to our own devices, we 
proceeded to examine more at leisure the surroundings 
of what was evidently a billiard-room. More oak, 
quaint settees, tapestried ceilings, and a carved demon 
or goblin with a dreadful smile leering from the corner. 
Pictures on all the vacant wall spaces. What were 
they ? We resolved to satisfy ourselves. 

Through the open door, across the hall, where a 
glimpse of garden was reflected in some white tiles, 
an animated conversation was going on, stray sentences 
In French drifted in as to the preparation of the 
pot-au-feu ; for madame, it seems, had but just returned 
from her diurnal marketing. The little maid returned 
in a few moments with fresh apologies for leaving the 
' ladies alone,' but ' madame had come in and it was 
necessary to go to her.' 'Was it Madame X.?' we 
inquired. ' Yes, it was Madame X., M. Hugo's 
sister-in-law,' who generally stayed in the island home 
nowadays. ' This,' continued our kind little cicerone, 
turning towards a painting of a lady of sweet and 
stately look, 'is a portrait of Madame Hugo.' The 
dignified beauty of the grave sweet face, and the pure 
lines of the sloping bust and bare arms, seeined to gain, 
by the gloomy setting, an added repose which per- 
chance a more brilliant environment might not have 
given. Near this souvenir — painted how many years 



ago ! — hung a photogravure of the old master with 
his grandchildren, charming certainly, but a little 
denaturalised by an allegorical ' Fame,' or something 
of the kind, which hovered in their midst. The rest 
of the pictures were a weird series of Hugo's own 
fancy, nearly monochromatic in colour and fantastically 
designed. Beside them hung a dark mellow old 
painting containing many figures in rich array : its sub- 
ject seemed a festival or ceremony among high, even 
august personages — a wedding may be. Such fair faces 
and flashing gems ! Such elegant dresses did the 
ladies trail across that sumptuous floor ; the men too, 
in their pictured habits laced with gold, not to be 
outdone by the resplendency of the ladies' attire, drew 
to themselves as much attention as they. Flanking 
this (seemingly) old Flemish painting, were Victor 
Hugo's water-colours. Just as in literature, so in 
painting — eccentric and powerful ; incisive and master- 
ful, yet exaggerated withal ; shadows heavily and 
shai-ply touched in with foi-ked touches of white • 
lightning-like streaks, playing across a world of shadow. 
One of these sketches was poetical, the rest scarcely 
so. Here a turreted castle seemed lifted up on a rock 
in a lonely land, its dark pinnacles fretting the moon- 
light with a certain sinister suggestion, an intention 
more definitely implied by the winged creature floating 
athwart the cold midnight sky. In the other motifs 
the grotesque and repellent were qualities more pro- 
minently combined, especially in one, quite ii la Van 
Beers in its melodramatic temper, of a ghastly and al- 
most fleshless head, hovering in chaotic gloom ; a flicker- 
ing patch of white illumining the blackness of another 
part of the picture, but without explanation or 
meaning. Nevertheless, extravagant as these gyin- 
nastics in pen and ink were, their saturnine humour 
somehow exacted the recognition of the sti-enuous and 
imaginative force that had projected them ; even these 
lightly washed - in sketches betraying the erratic 
strength so characteristic of his literary genius. Then 
traversing that murky, carpet-hung, dingy staircase, 
gloomy with shadow, we came upon more wondrous 
departures in the furnishing and decorative way, until 
it was perplexing to decide whether the ' Reception 
Room,' with its elaborate and ugly wall-hanging — a 
foliar design on a white ground (which also covers the 
ceiling), worked by some royal hand, — or the grotesque 
furnishing of the guest-chamber, with its twisted 
columns, allegorical carvings, and imposing bedstead 
(destined at one time for Garibaldi's use), were the more 
appalling. It was a relief to escape from this oppres- 
sive atmosphere of ' bigotry and virtue ' into that of 
the free grey daylight streaming in through the glazed 
study roof at the top of the house ; for here it was 
that the master once worked. Close at hand was his 
tiny bedchamber, where even the fanciful extravagance 
of his painted goblins and monsters lost much of their 
demoniacal character under the broad light which 
filled the room. At the side ran a little corridor well 
stocked with books — French and Latin classics, old 



PENDANT LA TEMPETE 



149 



friends all of them, well thumbed as if much read, 
and whole shelves full of his works in small 
octavo, paper bound. In the study two hinge desks, 
painted black, were affixed at each extremity of 
the window frame. A door led out on to the roof 
What a view ! What spaces of air and sky on evei-y side ! 
The town, crested with leafless trees and clustering 
roofs, sloped, an irregular mass, grey, purple, and rose- 
coloured, to the sea. That stretched, a long un- 
dulating waste, grey and restless, to the French coast, 
but faintly visible to the east. Like to some primaeval 
monsters, Sark, and the lesser islets of Herme and 
Jethou, lay sleeping in the sea, their rugged promon- 
tories and outlying rocks, their jagged tongues of land — 



needle-like serrations of granite — fringing St. Sampson's, 
washed by the whirling spray and foam of the fast 
incoming tide. 

Somewhere, below, four o'clock struck, and the 
sound was borne up from one or other of the many 
churches dedicated to the patron saints of the island. 
In a little time the hour was repeated by belfry 
after belfry, far and near, so we, with a last look at 
that lovely view, passed through the book-lined corridor 
and down the sombre house, bade farewell to the 
rosy Guernsey maid, and came out into the outer world 
just as the town was beginning to wane into a 
delicately grey twilight. 

Mary Reed, 



PENDANT LA TEMPETE. 



(Theophile Gautier.) 

TINY the bark is, and immense the sea ; 
To heaven we 're hurled upon the spiteful spray : 
Back to the flood heaven flings us angrily : 

Beside the broken mast, come, knee! and pray. 

Only a plank between us and the tomb : 
Perchance this evening in the bitter deep. 

Our bed a cold white winding-sheet of foam. 
Watched by the lightning we shall fall asleep ! 

Holy Madonna, flower of Paradise, 

So good to sea-folk with whom death doth sport. 
Hush the loud waters, lull the windy skies. 

And with thy finger push our skiff to port. 

And we will give, so thou guide safe and sound, 
A gown of silver paper — a goodly one — 

A wreathen candle weighing full four pound, 
A little wax St. John too, for thy Son. 



Translated hij Edward Carpenter. 



150 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



TOURGUENEFF, TOLSTOI, AND DOSTOIEVSKY. 



I, TOURGUENEFF, 




TOURGUENEFF occupies so prominent a place 
amidst the best novel-writers of our own time ; he 
touched upon such problems of the present development 
of civilised mankind ; he so thoroughly knew the human 
heart, and his manner of creation was so impressed 
with the stamp characteristic of the great masters of 
art, that it is utterly impossible to give an adequate 
idea of his work in the limits of a short note. All I 
can do is to give a few hints to awaken in my readers 
the desire of personal acquaintance with TourguenefTs 
works. 

There is, however, one feature which permits of 
Tourgueneff being characterised in a few words. His 
novels, the first of which appeared in 1845, cover a 
space of more than thirty years, and during these three 
decades Russian society underwent one of the deepest 
and most rapid modifications ever witnessed in history. 



The leading types of the educated classes went through 
successive changes with a rapidity which was only 
possible in a society suddenly awakening from a long 
slumber, casting away an institution which permeated 
its whole being (I mean serfdom), and rushing towards 
a new life. And that succession of ' history-making ' 
types was represented by Tourgueneff with a depth of 
conception, a fulness of philosophical and humanitarian 
understanding, and an artistic beauty which are found 
in none of the modern writers to the same extent and 
in that happy combination. 

Not that he would follow a preconceived plan. ' All 
these discussions about " tendency " and " unconscious- 
ness " in art,' he wrote, ■' are nothing but a current 
money of rhetorics — a money which is not recognised 
as being counterfeited because too many hold it for 
good. . . . Those only who cannot do better will sub- 



TOURGUENEFF, TOLSTOI, AND DOSTOIEVSKY 



151 



mit to a preconceived progi-ammej because a truly 
talented writer is the condensed expression of life 
itself, and he can write neither a panegyric nor a 
pamphlet : either is too mean for him.' But^ as soon 
as a new leading type of men or women appeared 
amidst the educated classes of Russia, Tourgueneff was 
taken by that new type, he was haunted by it, and 
haunted so long as he did not succeed to the best of 
his understanding in representing it in a work of art, 
just as Murillo was haunted for years by the image of 
a virgin in the ecstasy of purest love, so long as he did 
not succeed in rendering on the canvas his full artistic 
conception of the subject. 

Again, when some human problem had taken 
possession of TourguenefT's mind, he would not discuss 
it — that would have been the manner of the political 
writer', — he would conceive it in the shape of images 
and scenes. That manner of conceiving the problems 
of human development — the true manner of the poet 
— was also characteristic of his conversation. When he 
intended to give one an idea of some problem which 
worried his mind, he, who was so great a master in 
philosophical discussion, would not proceed that way : 
he would illustrate his idea by scenes so characteristic 
that they would for ever engrave themselves in the 
memory. Such he was also in his writings. His novels 
are a succession of scenes — some of them of the most 
exquisite beauty — which naturally follow each other, 
and fully and impressively characterise his heroes. 
Therefore all his novels are short, and need no plot to 
sustain the reader's attention. The reader who has 
been perverted by sensational novel-reading may be 
disappointed with that want of sensational episode, but 
the artistically trained reader, as soon as he opens the 
book, feels that he has i-eal men and women before him, 
with really human hearts throbbing in them, and he 
cannot part with the book before he has reached the 
end and grasped the characters in full. Simplicity of 
means to accomplish far-reaching ends — that chief 
feature of the really grand artist — is felt in all that 
Tourgueneff' wrote. When one is re-reading again and 
again his best novels, one may disagree with him as 
regards his conceptions of the types described, but 
would vainly search for one scene that might be wished 
altered, just as one would vainly search for a single 
feature or a shade of colour to be altered in the great 
works of the great painters. 

Tourgueneff' knew the human heart deeply, espe- 
cially the heart of a young, honest girl (that is, honest 
in the understanding of her duties to society), when 
her heart and mind are awakened by higher feelings 
and ideas, and that awakening takes, unconsciously 
for herself, the shape of love. In the description of 
that moment of life Tourgueneff' stands quite unrivalled 
in European literature ; and his force in that direction 
is equalled only by his art in describing those complex 
yet undefined feelings which Mickiewicz embodied in 
a beautiful sonnet, each stanza of which ends with the 
question : ' Is it friendship ? Is it love ?' 



Love is the leading motive of Tourgueneft's novels. 
The moment of its full development is the moment 
when his hero — he may be a political agitator, or a 
modest squire — appears in full light. Tourgueneff" knew 
that a type cannot be characterised by daily work — how- 
ever important it might be — and still less by discourses. 
For instance, he would not indulge in the relation of 
the fiery monologues of Roudin, for the simple reason 
that Roudin's words do not characterise him. Many 
have pronounced the same appeals to equality and 
liberty before Roudin, and so many will pronounce 
them after him. But that special type of apostles of 
equality and liberty — Roudin — is characterised by his 
relations to Natasha's mother, to Volyntseff", and to 
I'igassofl^, by the impression his words produce on the 
young honest hearts of Natasha and the student Bassis- 
toff", and especially by his love to Natasha. By his love 
— because in his or her love the human being appears 
in full, with the special features of his or her character. 
Thousands of men have done the ' propaganda by 
word,' like Roudin, but each of them has loved in a 
different way. Mazzini and Lassalle both have done 
similar work; but how diff'erent they were in their 
loves ! He does not know Lassalle who does not 
know his relations to the Countess of Hatzfeld. 

The earlier productions of Tourgueneff' (the mis- 
leading title, A Sportsman's Notebook was given to 
them in order to avoid the rigour of censorship) are 
well known in this countiy. It is also known that, 
albeit the simplicity of their contents, they gave a 
decided blow to serfdom. Tourgueneff" did not go on 
describing such atrocities of serfdom as might have 
been considered mere exceptions to the rule. Neither 
did he idealise the Russian peasants, as his talented 
contemporary, Grigorovitch, did ; but, by giving life- 
portraits of sensible, reasoning, and loving beings bent 
down under the yoke of serfdom, together with life- 
pictures of the shallowness and meanness of the life of 
the serf-owners — even the best of them — he awakened 
the consciousness of the wrong done by the system j^ 
while his short sketches of village life can be best com- 
pared with the genre pictures of the old Flemish school. 
Much more might be said about these powerful 
sketches, as well as regards his short novels, some of 
which (Asi/a, Faust, etc.) belong to his most artistic 
productions, while others (like Correspondence, Yakoff' 
Pasi/ukojf', etc.) touched upon some of the deepest 
problems of life. 

To judge of Tourgueneft's work one must read in 
succession — so he himself asked — his six novels : 
Rondut, A Nobleman's Retreat {Une nkhce de genti/s- 

' Nicholas I. fully understood the reach of the book, and in 
1S51, taking as a pretext a quite insignificant letter written by 
Tourgueneff on the occasion of Gogol's death, he ordered Tour- 
gueneff to be kept for a month imprisoned at a police station, and 
to be relegated to his estate. He was released no sooner than 
in 1S55, and the same year he brought out some of his finest pro- 
ductions : Roudin and Fanst. During his imprisonment at the 
police station he wrote Moicmou — the history of a servant and his 
dog, which is one of the most severe indictments against serfdom. 



152 



THE SCOTTISH AKT REVIEW 



kommes, or, still better, Li^a, in Mr. Rallston's version). 
On the Eve, Fathers and Sons, Smo/ce, and Virgin Soil. 
But one must also read his lecture on Hamlet and 
Don Quixote, because that remarkable lecture gives 
the very key to all that TourguenefF wrote. The fact 
is, that he divided the ' history-making ' men of 
humanity into Hamlets and Don Quixotes, both 
appearing in numberless varieties of thinkers and men 
of action, none of which fully corresponds to the two 
ideal types, but always approaches either the one or 
the other. ' Analysis first of all, and egotism, and, 
therefore, no faith,' so he characterised Hamlet. ' He 
lives entirely for himself, he is an egotist ; but an 
egotist cannot even believe in himself Therefore he 
is a sceptic, and therefore he never will do anything ; 
while Don Quixote, who fights against windmills, 
and takes a bai-ber's plate for the magic helmet of 
Mambrhi (' who of us has never committed the same 
mistake .' '), is a leader of the masses ; because the 
masses always follow those who, taking no notice of 
prosecution, nor of condemnation, not even of the 
laughter of the majority, march straight forward, 
always keeping their eyes fixed upon an aim which 
they may be alone in seeing. They search, they fall, 
but they rise again, and they find it ; and by right 
too, because only those find anything who are guided 
by the heart. Yet, though Hamlet is a sceptic, though 
he disbelieves in Good, he does not disbelieve in Evil. 
He deeply feels it and hates it. Evil and Deceit are 
his enemies, and his scepticism is not indifferentism, 
only negation. But negation and doubt, like fire, 
cannot be kept in bounds, and they consume his 
will. Both will and thought are necessary for acting, 
but in Hamlet they diverge more and more, 

' And thus the native hue of resolution 
Is sicklied o'er by the pale cast of thought. ' 

These few words give the best key to the under- 
standing of Tourgueneff. He himself belonged to a 
great extent to the Hamlets ; among them he had his 
best friends. He loved Hamlet ; yet he admired 
Don Quixote — the man of action. He felt his superi- 
ority ; but, while describing this second type of men, 
he never could surround it with that tender poetical 
love to a sick friend which makes the irresistible 
attraction of those of his novels which deal with one 
or other variety of the Hamlet type. 

In some of his earlier short tales Tourgueneff already 
touched upon Hamletism in Russian life. But it was 
in Roiidin that he achieved the full representation 
of that type, which had grown upon Russian soil at a 
time when our best men were condemned to inactivity 
and — words. He did not spare that type of men ; he 
has shown them with their worst features as well as 
with their best, and yet he treated them with tender- 
ness. He loved Roudin with all his defects. And with 
all that, his novel was an irrevocable condemnation of 
that sort of men. New men had to appear. 

And they appeared. But — with what pains, what 



torments of thought ! Lavretsky in Liza is one of 
them ; men who could not be satisfied with Roudin's 
preaching activity, but could not find their way for 
practical work amidst the new currents of social 
life. Men imbued with the high artistic and philo- 
sophical development of Roudin, and whose powers of 
action were ' sicklied ' — not by thought, but by the 
mediocrity of their surroundings. 

Lisa was an enormous success. It was said to be 
(together with the autobiographical tale. First Love) 
the most artistic of Tom-guenefFs novels. But in the 
present writer's opinion — quite apart from its contents 
— the novel which followed Lisa far exceeded it in the 
beauty both of its plan and of its details. I mean On 
lite Eve — a novel hardly known in this country.^ 

Already in Natasha (Roudin) Tourgueneff gave a 
life-picture of a Russian girl, grown in the quietness 
of village-life, but having in her heart and mind and 
will the germs of what moves human beings to higher 
action. Roudin's spirited words, his appeals to what 
is grand and worth living for, inflame her. She is 
ready to follow him, to support him in the great work 
he so eagerly and uselessly searches for, and as her 
mother never will consent to her marriage with Roudin, 
she is ready to fly with him — which proposal Roudin 
meets, however, with the advice of 'submitting' ! Since 
1855 Tourgueneff thus foresaw the birth of that type 
of women who much later played so prominent a part 
in the revival of Young Russia, Four years later, in 
On the Eve, he gave a further and fuller development 
of the same type, in Ellen. Ellen is not satisfied with 
the dull, trifling life in her own family, and she longs 
for a wider sphere of action. ' To be good is not 
enough ; to do good — yes ; that is the great thing in 
life,' she writes in her diary. But whom does she 
meet in her surroundings ? Shoubin, a talented artist, 
but a spoiled child, 'a. butterfly which admii-es itself ; 
Berseneff — a future professor, a true Russian nature — 
an excellent man, most unselfish and modest, but 
wanting inspiration. There is a moment when 
Shoubin, while walking on a summer night with 
Berseneff, says to him, ' I love Ellen, but Ellen loves 
you. . . . Sing, sing louder if you can ; and if 
you cannot, then take off your hat, look above, and 
smile to the stars. They all look upon you, upon 
you alone : they always look on those who ai'e 
in love ' ; but Berseneff returns home and — opens 
Raumer's History of the Hohenstauffcns. Then coines 
Insaroff, a Bulgarian patriot, entirely taken by one 
idea — the liberation of his mother-country ; a man 
of steel, rude to the touch, who has cast away all 
melancholic philosophical dreaming, and marches 
straight forward to his aim — and the choice of Ellen is 
settled. The pages given to the awakening of that 
feeling and its growth are the best ever written by 
Tourgueneff. When Insaroff suddenly becomes aware 
of his own love to Ellen, his first decision is to leave at 

' .K good English version of it appeared in iS86 in the Dublin 
Review. 



TOURGUENEFF, TOLSTOI, AND DOSTOIEVSKY 



153 



once the suburb of Moscow where they are all staj'ing. 
He goes to Ellen's house to announce his departure. 
Ellen asks him to promise that he will see her again 
to-morrow before leaving, but he does not promise. 
Ellen waits for him, and when she does not see him 
coming, she herself goes to him. Rain and thunder 
overtake her on the road, and she steps into an old 
chapel by the roadside. There she meets Insaroff, and 
the explanation between the shy, modest girl, who 
perceives that Insaroff loves her, and the patriot, who 
discovers in her the foi'ce which alone would reinforce 
his own energies, terminates by his exclamation: 
' Well, then, welcoiTie my wife before God and men ! ' 

In Ellen we have the real type of that Russian woman 
who joined heart and soul all movements for Russia's 
freedom — the woman who conquered tlie right to 
knowledge, who totally reformed the education of 
children, who fought for the liberation of the toiling 
masses, who endured unbroken in the snows and gaols 
of Siberia, who died on the scaffold. 

I will not even so much as touch upon the next 
production of Tourgueneff, Father and Sons. The hero 
of the novel, Bazaroff, the man 'who bows before no 
authority, however venerated it may be, and accepts 
of no principle unproved/ is too complicated and — let 
us not forget it — too universal a type to be disposed of 
incidentally. As to Tourgueneff"s relations to this type, 
they were of so complicated a nature that they became 
the subject of a most bitter controversy, which cannot 
be disposed of in a few lines. Let me simply remember 
what I have said upon Hamlet and Don Quixote, and 
add that the real meaning of that novel of Tourgueneff's 
for Western Europe, as well as for Russia, has been 
understood but by a very, very few critics, even in 
Russia itself 

Nor shall I dwell upon Smoke — a novel in which 
Tourgueneff" represented, on the one side, the type of 
the Russian lioness which haunted him for years, and 
to which he returned several times, until he finally 
succeeded in grasping it in Spring Flood ; and, on the 
other side, he pitilessly describes that society of 'liberal- 
ism making Generals ' into whose hands Russia unfoi'- 
tunately fell for the next twenty years. I cannot dwell 
upon Smoke, but I must answer a question which I have 
heard made hundreds of times, namely, whether the 
last novel of the sei-ies. Virgin Soil, well represents the 



Russian revolutionary youth .'' To this question I must 
answer in the negative ; but I must add that the 
novel was finished in 1876, that is, at a time when no 
one could possibly know that youth, unless belonging 
himself to the organisation which had spread all over 
Russia. Virgin Soil could only refer to the very earli- 
est phases of the movement which had for watchword 
' Be the people,' and yet Tourgueneff", who then chiefly 
lived in Paris, could not meet with any of the best 
representatives of the movement. Much of the novel is 
true, but the general impression is not precisely that im- 
pression which Tourguenefl^himself should have received 
if he better knew the Russian youth at that time. 

With all the force of his immense talent, Tourgue- 
neff could not supply by intuition the want of know- 
ledge ; and yet he has understood two characteristic 
features of the earliest part of the movement : the 
want of knowledge of the peasantry amongst the first 
promoters of it, and especially the incapacity of most of 
them to understand the Russian peasant, on account of 
the bias of their false literary, historical, and social 
education ; and the Hamletism — the resolution 

' Sicklied o'er by the pale cast of thought ' 

— which really characterised the movement during its 
first steps. If Tourgueneff had lived a few years 
more without being gnawed by his terrible disease (a 
cancer in the spinal cord, which occasioned him 
awfid pain, and affected to a certain extent his last 
productions), he undoubtedly would have grasped the 
new type of men of action — the new modification of 
the Insaroff's and Bazaroff's type — which grew up in 
proportion as the movement was taking firm root. He 
already had perceived them through the dryness of 
official records of the trial of ' the hundred and ninety- 
three,' and in 1878 he once asked me if I knew Mysh- 
kin, the most powerful individuality in that trial. I 
did not know him. ' That is a man,' Tourgueneff said, 
' with not the slightest trace of Hamletism.' And when 
he said so, I was struck with the thoughtful expression 
of his highly intelligent face : he obviously was medi- 
tating upon the new type in the movement-^the type 
which did not exist in the phase which he described 
in Virgin Soil, but which he had percei\ed in Myshkin's 
speech to the Court. 

P. Kropotkin. 




VOL. 11. 



154 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



LYCABETTA. 



LAUGHING eyes of changeful shine, 
Lycabetta, 
Where the shadow flitteth fine. 

Laughing Lycabetta ; 
Creature of an idle brain. 
Living only to be slain, 
Draped in robe of shifting grain, 
Lily Lycabetta. 



In the water's hollow tone, 

Lycabetta, 
Lies the mystery we own, 

Lycabetta, 
Lies our secret hidden deep 
In a seven times tranced sleep ; 
Laugh we then, or shall we weep ? 

Listen, Lycabetta. 



Where the shadows brooding still 
Cluster 'neath the haunted mill, 

Lycabetta, 
Brooding on the purple pond. 
Clinging to the pines beyond. 
There thou movest, fairy fond. 

Noiseless Lycabetta. 



Grey we grow, the mill and I, 
For I miss them, dreaming high, 

Lycabetta, 
Miss the old resolves of youth. 
Strong resolves to combat truth 
Till he bow, in fear or ruth, 

O my Lycabetta : 



Lo ! the slow night altereth, 

Lycabetta, 
Shivers at the morning's breath ; 

Linger, Lycabetta, 
Linger at the window there 
With the moonbeam in your hair 
Till the hills grow grey and bare. 

Beauty Lycabetta. 



Miss the old imperious loves, 

Lycabetta, 
Clad in purple, as behoves 

Conquest, Lycabetta, 
Blushing crimson from the fight 
Of a fancied ^vl•ong and right. 
Trembling, in their joys' despite, 

Not as Lycabetta. 



Lo ! familiar passion's tone, 

Lycabetta, 
Drives you from the heart you own, 

Lycabetta ; 
Art thou mortal ? Art thou weak ? 
Flitting younger hearts to seek. 
Sudden crimson in your cheek, 

Angry Lycabetta. 



For thou dwellest, brooding still, 
In the shadow of the mill, 

Lycabetta, 
And thy robe of constant blue 
Lets the mist and moonbeams through. 
Growing ever soft and true, 

Tiny Lycabetta. 



Once was this a merry mill. 
Maiden Lycabetta, 

Shaft and hopper now are still. 
Hear me, Lycabetta, 

Door and shutter unconfined 

Flapping in the idle wind ; 

Hear me, for my tale is kind. 
Hear me, Lycabetta. 



Ah ! thou goest : come again 
When the mist is on the plain, 

Lycabetta ; 
When the slow night altereth. 
Come about me with thy breath. 
Bring it life or bring it death, 

Angel Lycabetta. 

Herman Joynes. 



AMERICAN ART NOTES 



155 



OUR PLATES. 



' Reclining Girl and Butterflies,' by Matthew Maris, 
was exhibited in the Glasgow International Exhibi- 
tion, 1888, and is now reproduced with the permission 
of T. G. Arthur, Esq. 



' The Lance-Throwers ' is a decorative panel by 
Puvis de Chavannes, who in France stands at the head 
of artists in decoration. The picture has been repro- 
duced by permission of La Societe des Beaux-Arts, 



Glasgow. 



AMERICAN ART NOTES. 



THE leading topic of conversation in art circles for some time 
past has been the awards at the Paris Exposition to the 
United States Department of Fine Arts. They were generally 
satisfactory — numerically far more than was anticipated by the 
most sanguine. Individually they have caused some comment. 
To find William M. Chase in the second class, and Eastman 
Johnson, George Inness, Abbott Thayer, Edward E. Simmons in 
the third class, while A. H. Wyant is simply down for an honour- 
able mention, seems to us here at home somewhat incongruous, 
to say the least. But the ways of juries are inscrutable ; and while 
those of France are, as a general rule, I think, more just than 
perhaps anywhere else, they will do curious things, and in their 
verdicts the unexpected generally happens. 

Thomas Moran, better known to our English cousins as an 
etcher and prolific illustrator in the magazines than as a painter, 
has brought a suit against the estate of the late Joseph Drexel of a 
peculiar nature. Previous to the erection of the statue of Liberty 
Enlightening the World by Bartholdi in New York Harbour, Mr. 
Moran painted a big picture in oils of that monument of largeness 
as it was destined to stand in our Bay, and sold it, he claims, 
though it has not yet been paid for, to Mr. Drexel for the modest 
sum of thirty tlwiisand dollars ! On the death of that gentleman, 
Mr. Moran presented his bill to the widow, who is administratrix 
of the estate. That lady demurred at the bill and offered to return 
the painting, but Mr. Moran contended that the picture was sold 
at a time when there was great public interest in the statue 
project, which gave the painting a value then which no longer 
exists. By mutual consent the matter was brought before a Mr. 
Sheppard, appointed as referee by the Supreme Court. After a 
large amount of testimony had been taken, it was decided to have 
the question left to arbitrators. Mr. Oehme, of ICnoedlerand Co., 
was appointed for the estate, and Mr, W^indmuUer, of the Eden 
Musee, for Mr. Moran. Mr. Oehme declared the picture worth 
.?5ooo and Mr. Windmuller stood out for §10,000. Failing to 
agree, Mr. Charles Stuart Smith, president of the New York 
Chamber of Commerce, himself the owner of a superb collection 
of modern paintings, was selected as umpire to give a final 
decision. He thought the value even less than Mr. Oehme, and 
these two gentlemen finally settled on the sum of S3500 as a fair 
valuation. Mr. Windmuller did not know that a decision was to 
be given by a majority of the arbitrators, Mr. Moran maintains, 
and the artist now sues to have the award set aside as irregular and 
unfair. 

It opens up a curious phase of American art ways. While in 
this case Mr. Moran is a good average painter, and a man of 
established reputation, certainly thirty thousand dollars is an 
absurd price for the picture in question, and far beyond its market 
value. But there are painters not deserving of the name, men not 
known at all, or if they are, only known as incompetent and to the 
last degree inartistic, who succeed in painting portraits of well- 
known public men, and in palming them off to colleges, libraries. 



and public institutions at sums incredible to believe. The Capitol 
at Washington is full of great acres of canvas and paint ridiculous 
to look at, bought and paid for by the nation at large prices 
because the painters had some pull on members of Congress who 
could lobby bills through authorising their purchase. 

An example comes to my mind d propos of the recent sale of the 
' Angelus ' in Paris. The Corcoran Gallery in Washington — a sad 
and dreary place to visit, goodness knows,— needing some decent 
pictures, and seldom or never buying anything by native men, 
actually sent over a representative to purchase the much-talked-of 
Millet, aulhorising him to pay one hundred thousand dollars there- 
for ! Fortunately they did not succeed in getting it, and so a 
piece of utter stupidity and folly was avoided. What would 
the throng of Western brides and grooms who come to the 
Capitol have thought of it ? People would have stood and 
gaped at the ' one hundred thousand dollar picture,' but would 
it repay such an enormous outlay, save to show what Yankee 
dollars could do ? It is a sad commentary to think of a lot of men, 
both here and at home, struggling hard, painting good, honest, 
sincere work, and often large gallery pictures, not one of which 
ever gets to the Capitol, though modest sums could buy them and 
they would decorate any collection, and their purchase would 
encourage and foster native talent. England, France, Germany, 
Italy, — all these and many other countries take a pride and a 
satisfaction in collecting native work ; but here, alas ! we 've millions 
for outsiders but nothing for our own men, and considering that 
out of 255 exhibitors at the Paris Exposition loS received re- 
compenses, including three medals of honour and eight gold 
medals, American talent has received a very substantial stamp of 
French approval. 

Mr. Sutton, of the American Art Association, who had the 
distinction, proud or otherwise, of paying the highest price ever 
paid for a modern painting at auction, when Millet's famous 
'Angelus' shall arrive in this city, will have given $152,996, for 
a canvas 22 x 26 inches. They will exhibit it in the various cities, 
and Mr. Sutton says it is not for sale. 

Initiatory steps have been taken towards the formation of a new 
society to be known as the American Fine Arts Society. The 
original formers of the association are the Society of American 
Artists, the Architectural League of New York, the Art Students' 
League of New York, and the Society of Painters in Pastel. The 
capital stock has been fixed at §50,000, to be subscribed for by the 
societies or their members. It is proposed to erect a large and 
handsome building in West Forty-second Street, with commodious 
galleries and meeting rooms, and to devote the upper part to 
studios and appartments for artists. A large amount of money has 
already been subscribed. The officers are Howard Russell Butler, 
president; Frederick Crownshield, vice-president; Charles R. 
Lamb, treasurer ; and H. J. Hardenberg, secretary. Among the 
trustees are Louis Tiffany, E. H. Blashfield, Chester Loomis, 
Francis C. Jones, and others. AnTHtJR Barnett. 



156 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



NOTES AND REVIEWS. 



The National Association for the Advancement of Art 
AND ITS Application to Industry holds its second Congress in 
Edinburgh from 27tli October till 2d November. The President, 
the Marquis of Lome, will deliver an inaugural address on Monday, 
2Sth October, a sermon in connection with the Congress being 
delivered on the Sunday pre- 
vious. The meetings will be 
held in the National Portrait 
Gallery. The addresses of the 
sectional Presidents will be de- 
livered in the Queen Street Hall 
on the morning of Tuesday, 
and on the afternoons of Tues- 
day, Wednesday, Thursday, and 
Friday in the Congress week. 
The ordinaiy sectional meetings 
will be held in the National 
Portrait Gallery on the mornings 
of Wednesday, Thursday, and 
Friday. Three free lectures to 
working men will be delivered 
on the evenings of Tuesday, 
Thursday, and Friday. Papers 
will be contributed by the fol- 
lowing, among others : — G. F. 
Watts, R.A., W. F. Yeames, 
R.A., J. E. Hodgson, R.A., 
W. B. Richmond, A.R.A., 
Professor Herkomer, A.R.A., 
Alfred Gilbert, A.R.A., G. A. 
Lawson, E. Roscoe Mullins, 
George Simonds, T. Stirling 
Lee, Walter Crane, Philip 
Rathbone, Dr. Joseph Ander- 
son. Among residents in Scot- 
land who will read papers are 
Professor Baldwin Brown, Mr. 
F. H. Newbery, Mr. D. W. 
Stevenson, Mr. W. D. Mackay, 
Mr. A. Roche. 

The programme of the archi- 
tectural section has been so far 
arranged. Papers will be read 
upon the following subjects: — 
Art in Relation to Public 
Buildings, Architectural Effect 
in Cities, Municipal Legislation 
in Reference to Architecture, 

Architectural Mouldings, Character of Scottish National Archi- 
tecture, Architectural Education, Sources of Architectural Ex- 
pression, Practical Suggestions for Artistic Co-operation. 

Professor Baldwin Brown, who is much interested in pro- 
cesses of Mural Decoration, and who is one of the Secretaries of 
the Committee on Applied Art, has arranged with the authorities 
at South Kensington for the loan of a number of examples 
illustrating the various processes of mural decoration. These 
will be on view at the Museum of Science and Art, Edinburgh, 
during the meeting of the Congress, and facilities will be given by 
the Director of the Museum to artists desiring information upon 
the practical details of the processes illustrated. The following 
are Presidents of sections : — 




v:>;'>'3K-ra 







A. Painting. 

Pn-sideul—BRiToti Riviere, Esq., R.A. 
Hon. Secrdary—]. Farquharson, Esq., 
London, W. 



Porchester Gardens, 



£. Sculpture. 

Pirsidml — E. Onslow Ford, Esq., A.R.A. 
Hon. Secretary— G. Simonds, Esq., Priory Studios, St. John's 
Wood, London. 

C. Architecture. 



President — R. RoWAND A NDER- 

son, Esq., LL.D. 
Hon. Secretary — H. H. Stat- 

HAM, Esq. 

D. Applied Art. 

President — William Morris, 
Esq. 

Hon. Secretary — M E R V Y N 
Macartney, Esq., 52 
Berkeley Square, London. 

E. Art History and 
Museums and National 
and Municipal Encour- 
agement OF Art. 

President — SYDNEY COLVIN, 
Esq. 

Hon. Secretaries — Lionel 
CuST, Esq., British 
Museum, London ; Whit- 
ivORTH Wallis, Esq., 
Birmingham. 

SHORTLY after the death of 
Mr. James Sellars, the architect 
of the Glasgow International 
Exhibition Buildings, a move- 
ment was set on foot to have 
a suitable memorial erected. 
Mr. John Keppie, who had 
assisted Mr. Sellars, was in- 
trusted with the task of de- 
signing a monument, and Mr. 
J. Pittendreigh Macgillivray was 
commissioned to execute a 
bronze medallion to be inserted 
in Mr. Keppie's architectural 
framework. 



The Second Exhibition ot the Arts and Crafts Society opens on 
October 7th and closes on December 7th. It is too soon to pre- 
dict whether the Second Exhibition will be made as great a 
success as the first ; but if enthusiasm and hard work can eifect it, 
it may be held as having been done. 

Glasgow School of Art. — The awards in the National Com- 
petition made to this school are second highest among the schools 
of the United Kingdom, and comprise one gold medal and the 
Princess of Wales's scholarship of £2^ for women only, and of 
both which Miss Maggie Strang is the recipient ; four silver medals ; 
six bronze medals and six book prizes, together with two ' Owen 
Jones ' bronze medals, given annually for studies in textile design. 
An exhibition of the National Competition drawings was held in 
the Corporation Galleries from the 25th to the 27th September 
inclusive. 




NOTES AND REVIEWS 



157 



Has Art thriven best in an Age of Faith ? By Richard C. 
Jebb, LL. D. , Professor of Greek in the University of Glasgow, 
etc. A paper read before the members of the Glasgow Art 
Club, 25th March 18S9. Published by Request. Glasgow : 
Kerr and Richardson, 1S89. 

It has been announced that the proceeds of the sale of this 
lecture are to be given to the Artists' Benevolent Fund, and this 
should alone suffice to induce every one who wishes well to the 
Fund to increase its circulation. But the paper has quite other 
claims upon public attention. Professor Jebb during his residence 
in Glasgow appeared very seldom upon any rostrum save his own, 
but when he did, he never failed to discourse in nervous and 
eloquent English, whatever might be the subject with which he 
dealt. Artists have a proverbial distrust of the lay mind ; and it 
may be at once admitted that this distrust is to a large extent 
justified. Books and the literary habit are perhaps one of our 
chief curses. We have read ourselves into stupidity, and have to 
all intents lost our sense of sight. This sightlessness belongs not 
alone to literary persons, but even to the profane vulgar, to whom 
cheap editions have brought the bane of book learning. But the 
artist is a man apart ; he has avoided learning as a vain thing, and 
as a reward has been vouchsafed the use of his eyes. It may be 
that his eye is quicker to observe than his hand is to design, but 
that will come, so long as he remains in ignorance of the little 
learning which is the dangerous thing. Though the artist never 
reads, and only occasionally forgets himself so far as to think, he 
is quite willing to hear a ' public orator ' discourse in mellifluous 
periods about Art, feeling all the while, of course, that the orator 
knows nothing about it, and that he, the artist, looks down upon 
the affair from an unattainable height. Still there is much in 
Professor Jebb's address that might help to clarify ideas about Art 
and the history of it, even in the mind of the artist. The burden 
of Professor Jebb's contention is substantially the same as that of 
Mr. Whistler's in his Teti o'clock, namely, that Art is one 
thing, and Faith another, and that there is no necessary connec- 
tion between them : that Art has flourished in an age of Faith, and 
has flourished in an age of Scepticism ; that Art is moral, not 
when it preaches, but when it is good Art ; that when a work of 
Art teaches, it does so not in its character as a work of Art, but in 
some other character which is outside the range of Art ; — in brief, 
that we must have two categories. Art and Morals, and that we 
must not jumble them together. It is matter for congratulation to 
the artist mind that a scholar should come forward to vindicate 
the view of the artist before the conventional picture gazer, who 
wants a story with a moral to it in every canvas that is painted 
upon. 

The reaction against State education which has already set in 
in France and Italy has not as yet made way in this country. 
The School Board and the Education Department, in spite of their 
blunders, still contrive to retain their hold upon us. On the Con- 
tinent, however, the situation is so far different that education by 
private initiative, instead of by State administration, is a more or 
less popular movement. On the 5th and 6th of August of this year, 
there met in Paris a ' Congres International des OEuvres d'lnstruc- 
tion populaire par I'initiative privee,' under the presidency of 
M. Jean Mace, one of the Senators of France, who is widely 
known as an enthusiastic educationist. Some twenty years ago 
M. Mace founded the League of Beblenheim with the object of 
freeing education from State control, and since then educationists 
in many countries have taken up the same position. It is instruc- 
tive to note, that ainong the representatives at the Congress was 
General Tcheng-Ti-Kong, Chargc-iT affaires of China, who repre- 
sented the country where State control of education is carried to 
the greatest known e.xtreme, and from which Western nations have 
borrowed the system of competitive examination. The Congress 
by a resolution founded an International League, and resolved to 
meet next year at Brussels. This manifestation of an intellectual 
anti-State movement is full of interest to the sociologist as well as 
to the educationist. 



Academy Sketches. Edited by Henry Blackburn. 
London : W. H. Allen and Co., 1S89. 

The Academy Sketches have been so imitated, and in a 
great measure forestalled by the cheap issues of the Pait Mall 
Extras and other similar publications, that the editor is driven to 
illustrate those pictures that have not been otherwise adequately 
illustrated. This places the volume at a certain disadvantage, 
although perhaps it increases its value to the historian of art. The 
illustrations in the issue of 1S89 are of very varied quality. The 
possibilities of processes of reproduction are so little understood 
by the general public, even by those who ought to understand 
them, that the impossible is frequently attempted in order to meet 
public demand. While this is not precisely the occasion to dis- 
cuss so large and rapidly developing an art as that of reproduction, 
it may be noted, briefly, that a picture, especially one of large size 
and complex scheme of colour, can very rarely be adequately 
reproduced by mechanical process, unless it has been drawn or 
painted with such reproduction in view, and with a knowledge of 
the requirements and limitations of the process to be employed. 
Thus, though the art of reproducing pictures by means of photo- 
graphy, with subsequent complicated manipulations, has certainly 
been carried to a very wonderful degree of truthfulness, the 
limitations of every process are only too obvious to those who are 
practically engaged in the task of selecting the most suitable 
method of reproducing any selected picture. The most successful 
reproductions are invariably those made from sketches, where a 
certain definite relation between the size of the original and the 
size of the reproduction can be preserved, and where obtrusive 
yellows, for example, which cause so much trouble in photography, 
can be avoided. The black and white sketch, at the present 
stage of the art of reproduction, does undoubtedly give the best 
result. A good plate is nevertheless occasionally obtained from a 
finished picture, but this is unfortunately as yet a rare case, not. 
withstanding the expenditure of an amount of care and- trouble 
that might well seem incredible to the public, which lightly 
regards the merits of such productions as finally settled by ' We 
like it,' or ' We don't like it.' It goes without saying, therefore, 
that the reproductions from finished pictures in the Academy 
Sketches, are, as a rule, unsatisfactoiy ; and that those from 
sketches are generally quite satisfactory as reproductions, and 
valuable as memory notes of the pictures they represent. 

Music for the People : A Retrospect of the Glasgow Exhibition, 
1888 ; with an Account of the Rise of Choral Societies in 
Scotland. By Robert A. Marr. Edinburgh and Glasgow : 
John Menzies and Co. 1889. 

This is a useful book of reference, though its utility would have 
been much increased by an index. It gives an authentic account 
of musical events in Scotland, biographies of musicians settled 
there, and of musical bands (excluding the street German bands) 
which have come as visitors. The introduction upon 'The Rise of 
Choral Societies in Scotland ' is full of carefully compiled materials. 

Lays of Middle Age and other Poems. By James Hedderwick, 
LL.D. Edinburgh and London : William Blackwood and 
Sons, 1S89. 

The proprietor, and formerly the editor, of the Glasgow Even- 
ing Citizen, has long been known as an accomplished man of 
letters. Somehow the atmosphere of journalism in Glasgow seems 
to be favourable to the production of verse, for out of two of the 
newspaper oflices in the city there have come many volumes dur- 
ing recent years. Most of the poems, in the dainty duodecimo 
before us, were published in a quarto volume by Messrs. Macmillan 
and Co. in 1859. This volume has been long out of print, and now 
that the author has passed from middle to old age, he republishes 
the works of his earlier years with additions. The Poems are 
illustrated with a series of highly creditable original designs by 
Mr. David Gauld, 



158 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



Natio7ial Insurance: Necessary and Possible. Two Lectures by 
Rev. W. Moore Ede, M.A., Rector of Gateshead. London: 
Walter Scott, 1889. 

After having been for a time a University Extension Lecturer 
upon Political Economy, Mr. Moore Ede was appointed to the 
care of one of the most densely populated of working-class 
localities in the country. He took full advantage of his excellent 
apprenticeship, for his parochial work has been characterised by 
wise and carefully organised practical activity. "Whether as an 
inventor of an economical cooking range, as an organiser of relief 
during times of distress, or as a helpful everyday adviser, Mr. 
Ede has come to be recognised as one of the most useful men of 
his time. We cannot here discuss his Scheme for National 
Insurance ; but it demands the attention specially of those who 
find in the frequent extravagance and mismanagement of Friendly 
Societies a serious danger to working people, and who believe in 
National Security for their savings. The increasing stress of com- 
petition for employment, which limits the working period of life, 
renders the argument for the adoption of some scheme of this 
kind very strong indeed. 

The Real Macbeth. By The Real MacDuff. London: Swan 
Sonnenschein and Co., 18S9. 

Price One Shilling, ' worth no more ' is the modest motto of this 
book of caricature sketches of the Lyceum Macbeth. It would be 
rather hard to appraise its precise value, for 'there is none but he,' 
— at least that legend also appears upon the cover. When one 
ventures within, it is only to discover that Mr. Irving's notoriously 
attenuated limbs are rather too long drawn out. They are 
continued over every page to the end. A grasshopper is an 
entertaining insect ; but he palls. Criticism of such a ' taking ofl'' 
would be out of place ; but indeed there is too much grasshopper 
and too little fun. 



Favotir and Forhme. By the Author of Jack Urptharl's Daugh- 
ter. London : Spencer Blackett and Hallam. 

In the first chapter of her new novelette the authoress oljack 
Urquharfs Daughter introduces us to an interior which, with its 
' wax flowers and fruit, Berlin woolwork, antimacassars and very 
sham lace,' would have given pleasure to Thackeray in his less 
amiable moods. But upon the stage so garnished are heard very 
soon the accents of true romance. At the moment when his 
declaration is being made, the manly and straightforward John 
Challoner, the hero of the book, appears in a very sympathetic 
light ; whilst in the heroine. Fortune Milner (or ' Tony,' as she is 
familiarly called), ill-trained and misguided as she is, the reader 
will quickly detect the existence of true metal. The book is a 
history of the passage from the lower to the higher life of Fortune 
and her sister, Favour. The Berlin woolwork and very sham 
lace which adorn the drawing-room of their mother's house in the 
* small crescent in Bayswater ' are symbolical of the false ideals to 
the cherishing of which the two girls have been brought up. It is 
only by means of sorrow and hardship that their deliverance from 
the state of bondage is at last accomplished. As might betaken 
for granted, the course of Challoner's true love does not run 
smooth. He is old beyond his years, absorbed in business ; but 
what is more fatal still to his happiness is that, at the outset, he is 
contrasted in the eyes of his intended bride with the memory 
of a certain fascinating Ernest Levinge, whom she has known 
(extremely well) in bygone days. The pair are married ; but, on 
their wedding-day, the stoiy of his wife's flirtation with her former 
lover (which has been carefully kept back from him by her mother) 
comes accidentally to Challoner's ears. Tims there is a barrier 
placed between husband and wife at the very first ; and ere long 
the existence of a handsome but mysterious lady client of Chal- 
loner's gives rise to a serious misapprehension in the mind of 
Fortune. From the shadow of these clouds, in due course, the 
couple emerge into the sunlight of happy wedded life — but not 



(as has been indicated) before Fortune has had time to know, and 
profit by, the discipline of that sorrow which has been truly called 
the touchstone of charticter. Side by side with her story runs 
that of Favour, — the younger sister's elopement with Edward 
Richardson, the son of a reputed millionaire, on the very eve of 
his father's failure, and of the straits in which the young married 
couple, in consequence, find themselves placed. Favour has her 
sister's faults in an exaggerated degree, and it takes longer to 
subdue her. But surely few readers, as they close the book, will 
refuse to agree that her last state, notwithstanding all that is sad 
in it, is yet better than her first. It is among the minor characters 
of the book that we find most room for criticism. .Surely, in her 
present volume, the authoress has devoted more than enough of 
space to the depicting of characters so much beneath the dignity of 
human nature as are those of Mrs. Milner, Cousin Selina and Mrs. 
Dyke. It is true that Mrs. Milner is necessary to the scheme of 
the book ; but there is too much of the other two, and the small 
amount of amusement which is to be derived from reading about 
them is certainly not of a truly pleasant or wholesome kind. 
Furthermore, of the character-drawing generally it may be said 
that mote precision of line is desirable. After all, the difference 
between good art and bad is very often merely the difference 
between ihn d feu pris a.nA the thing itself. On the other hand, 
the writer's reflections upon life are sound, and often original and 
vigorously expressed. Nor must we take leave of the book with- 
out a passing reference to the touches of millinery in it, which are 
excellent. Even a male reader shudders at the thought of a 
' cotton velvet cloak, trimmed with some unknown fur mounted on 
black muslin, which fell to pieces in a month.' We wish the 
authoress oi Jack UrqitharC s Daughter the best of speed with her 
next story. 

A Week on the Concord and Merrimac Rivers. By Henry 
Thoreau. With a Prefatory Note by Will. H. Dircks. 
London : Walter Scott, 24 Warwick Lane. 

To make a treatise on transcendentalism in New England, and 
to show the relation of Thoreau to that movement, all within the 
compass of some eighteen pages, were an act of gallantry that 
might well be admired. Mr. Dircks has done this, and done it 
well. It is no mean thing to have crowded so much abstruse 
matter made interesting into so small a space. The essay would 
certainly have gained much by greater lucidity of expression ; yet 
there are some subjects — and transcendentalism is one of them 
— that defy dilution to meet the needs of children. These must 
leave such things alone till they grow. Though the summary is con- 
ceived very broadly, there are some points upon which one might 
feel inclined to dissent from the writer. For example, in 
enumerating the forerunners of the New England transcendental- 
ists, surely Hegel and Comte ought to have found a place with 
Kant and Goethe ; and much might be said for the exclusion of 
Lessing. The contrast between the transcendental idealisation of 
the individual by the New Englanders and the transcendental sup- 
pression of individual aims by Count Tolstoi is extremely well 
put, and the general terms of the characterisation of Thoreau are 
very apt. The brief criticisms, too, of Thoreau's critics are usually 
to the point. Still, when Mr. Lowell says that * Thoreau had no 
humour,' he means, of course, that Thoreau's sense of humour was 
not sufficiently strong to prevent him assuming absurd poses, and 
doing and saying absurd things. A man may be excessively funny 
■ who has no vestige of the sense of humour, and it may even 
seriously be questioned whether Thoreau, or say Wordsworth, ever 
realised how very amusing they were. On the other hand, a keen 
sense of humour is oppressive, for it prevents a man from ever 
committing himself to an absurdity, or permitting himself to be 
seen in an incongruous situation. If Mr. Lowell's own sense of 
humour had been a trifle keener, he might never have written the 
Bigloxo Papers. It is possible that some people may even now do 
.as Mr. Lowell did by Thoreau, and laugh at him as well as with 
him. The two volumes Walden and A Week on the Concord, to 
be followed, it is to be hoped, by others, have placed the man of 



AT THE GATE 



159 



the universal No within the reach of English readers ; for the 
American editions were too expensive for general sale. The ten- 
dency which seems to be developing itself towards simplification of 
life stands in definite relation to the influence of Thoreau among 
those other complex infliuences that go to make up social move- 
ments. 

The Smoker's Text-Book. Printed and published at the Office of 
Copers Tobacco Plant. Liverpool : 1SS9. 

Those who remember one of the wisest, wittiest, and least con- 
ventional of periodicals, Cope's Tobacco Plant, will welcome this 
little brochure. The Plants which lies before us complete in a 
ponderous volume, ran a more or less regular career from 1S70 till 
18S1, and contains not only many admirable monographs upon 
Tobacco, but much else besides. It numbered among its con- 
tributors Charles G. Leland, the author of Hans Breitmann^s 
Ballads, and the late James Thomson, the author of The City of 
Dreadful Night, both of whom have appeared in our pages, the 
latter by the posthumous publication of leaves from his note-books. 
Poor Thomson indeed occupied about a year of his life in writ- 
ing for The Plant. Some of his papers which appeared there 
will surely be republished. Those upon Walt Whitman, Saint- 
Amant, and Baudelaire would form a most readable volume. The 
Plant was little regarded during its too brief life, though it con- 
tained good writing and sound learning enough to have made the 



reputation of half a dozen magazines. George Pipeshank, who 
drew the illustrations, will unquestionably be remembered as a 
caricaturist of great originality, while some at least have reason to 
remember the 'able editor' who shrouded himself behind so im- 
penetrable a veil of anonymity. The Smoker's Text-Book con- 
sists of extracts and imitations, for which latter The Plant was 
specially famous, and contains also several characteristic sketches 
by George Pipeshank. 

*TiiE Dial' is pre-eminently Md art magazine. It is written, 
illustrated, and published by artists, and perhaps even printed by 
artists. Its manner, matter, and price prevent even the suggestion 
of its aiming at popularity ; but its aim, to supply for a small circle 
designs and writing, each of them transfused by the spirit of art, 
which is not understood of the multitude, is a most worthy aim. 
The designs of C. H. Shannon and C. S. Ricketts are at once 
original and Blakeish. They have the quaint imaginativeness of 
many of Blake's drawings, with a certain modernness of invention 
which is distinctly original. The somewhat grandiose pages of 
The Dial contain chiefly imaginative word sketches. In the 
main these are written with due artistic restraint, the paramount 
desideratum in such writing. There is besides an interesting and 
thoroughly competent article upon Puvis de Chavannes. 7he 
Dial altogether is a very noble effort, which all those who wish to 
encourage efforts towards the leavening of life with refinement and 
beauty ought to aid in finding a permanent place. 



AT THE GATE. 



Ars longa, vilu brevis. 



THE temple of eternal song. 
Its tops are in the sky, 
Its vast foundations, massy, strong. 
Deep in Olympus lie ! 



Comes one with trembling voice, and weak 

Tears in his fading tone ; 
The silence throbs, and seems to speak. 

His pathos made its own. 



Its gates are open all life long. 
Its doors swing to and fro. 

And in and out in ceaseless throng 
The sinsers come and sro. 



Comes yet a third of changeful mood. 
Now meek, now passioning high ; 

He pipes a pastoral solitude. 
He shrills a battle-cry. 



They come in solemn, ceaseless tide. 
They sing their hymns and go, 

And all life long the gates are wide. 
The doors swing to and fro. 



They come with various gift of song, 
They leave their gifts, and go ; 

The gates stand open all life long. 
The doors swing to and fro. 



Comes one with voice of volumed power 
And strong o'ermastering strain ; 

The temple to its topmost tower 
Rings and resounds again. 



The temple echoes all day long ; 

I hear the various din. 
Yet, doubtful of my gift of song, 

I fear to enter in, — 



Like one that fond oblation brings. 
And enters not, though near. 

Who ne'er himself in service sings 
Nor stands with those that hear. 



J. LooiE Robertson. 



160 THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 

LA MORTE AMOUREUSE. 

FOR MUSIC. 

AS I lay dreaming, dreaming-- 
Through the moonlight, o'er the dew 
Came a form of fairest seeming — 
A form, a face, I knew. 

As I lay dreaming. 

My love stood by my side ! she spake 

(As I lay dreaming), 
' What dost thou here, beloved } Awake ! ' 

For I lay dreaming. 

' Love, come away ! the night is serene : 
The witches dance on the moonlit green : 
The world is asleep ; but ghosts are at play . . . 
Love, I have sought thee ! O love, come away!' 

I rose from the ground, and we mounted in haste : 
We rode like the wind over mountain and waste ! 
Oh, strange were the scenes that we passed in our ride. 
But sweet were her words as she rode by my side ! 

We came to the hill-top with wild heaths around 
(I heard in the distance the waterfall's sound). 
And there, with my love, by the light of the moon. 
With rapture I danced to a mystical tune. 

' O lost love, adieu ! ' ' O fair love, be true ! ' 

We spake and we kissed 'mid the moonlight and dew . 

Alas ! as we spake, with the dawning of day 

My love, as I kissed her, passed softly away ! 

And I lay dreaming, dreaming. 
By moonlight, 'mid the dew ! 

That form of fairest seeming, 
That face, no more I knew ; 

But lonely, broken-hearted. 

Unable to forget 
How we met and kissed and parted, 

I am dreaming, dreaming yet. 



(yld lib.) 

George Douglas. 







Ediitiurgk: T. n:ii A. Constable, Prin'crs to Her M.ijcsty. 



-^6^3 




The Scottish Art Review 



Edited bv JAMES MAYOR. 



Vol. 11. NOVEMBER 1889. No. 18. 



AFTER GOETHE. 

Ucber alien Gipfeln isl Rii/i. 

/~\^ the still mountain-peak 
^-^ There is rest. 
Adown his high crest 
Scarce bringeth the wind 

A whisper to you. 
In the hushed wood no bird sing's so late. 

Wait, wait, — only wait — 

Thou shalt rest too. 



AFTER HEINE. 

Dii bisl it'ie eiiie Bltime. 



T 



HOU art like unto a flower. 
As fresh, and pure, and fair : 



I gaze on thee, and sadness 
Steals o'er rae unaware. 

I fain would lay all gently 
My hands on thy head in prayer 
That God may keep thee for ever 
As fresh and pure and fair. 

{The same — prose version.) 
Freshj pure, and fair, you are like a flower. Sadness 
occupies my heart the while I gaze upon you. 

I fain would lay my hands upon your head, praying 
God to keep you fresh, pure, and fair. 

Ernest R.\dford. 

VOL. II. 



162 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIE^^^ 



A NOTE ON THE ^ESTHETIC DEVELOPMENT OF AMERICA. 



IT has so long been the vogue with certain of our 
Reviews to slight American arts and letters, that 
it is only natural there should be a reaction in the 
sentiment with which English criticism is regarded 
by our Transatlantic comrades. There was a time, 
now fortunately past, when the latter almost dreaded 
to allude to any of their contemporary poets or 
novelists as a really eminent writer of English prose 
or verse. Now, it may be, the tendency is to over- 
estimate as native what is only so in the most limited 
sense ; yet, better thus — better the exaggerations of 
independence than subservience to critical formulas, 
which even here have, in so many instances, become ob- 
solete. One might imagine, from the flippant remarks 
of certain critics, that American artists and authors 
were rude colonials striving to imitate the aesthetic 
virtues of a far sui^erior race. American novelists are, 
with one or two exceptions, too often 'criticised' with 
impertinent condescension, although it is obvious 
enough to any unprejudiced observer that the art of 
fiction is, to say the least of it, as adequately under- 
stood among our neighbours as among ourselves. The 
short story, the episodical novel, flourish in America 
as they never have flourished here. As for recent 
American poetry, it is simply unrecognised by almost 
all the ' leading weekly papers.' Nothing later than 
Whittier's verse, or that of Dr. Holmes or Mr. Lowell, 
seems to be deserving even of mention. Yet the poetic 
renascence in America is as remarkable in the present 
as it is significant for the future. But however much 
Transatlantic literature may suffer in the hands of some 
of us, it is treated with dignity compared to the measure 
of appreciation which we mete out to American art. 
True, no one is found ready to deny the immense 
superiority of the Americans in the art of wood engrav- 
ing, but when it comes to their work in colours and in 
clay, scant indeed is the recognition we give. It was 
with amazement that I read some time ago in a perio- 
dical of long established repute, that in art America 
owed just as much to England as in literature — that, 
in a word, her art is essentially crude, derivative, un- 
enfranchised. Were it not that such glib assertions go 
forth and gain acceptance among readers only a few 
degrees more intelligent than the writers, there would 
be no harm done. In all times geese have cackled, 
and neither the ancients nor the moderns have 
regarded them as birds of wisdom. 

There is no doubt that to this arrogance on the one 
side, and the perhaps exaggerated resentment on the 
other, is due something at least of the prevalent mis- 
apprehension of the aesthetic development of America. 
But at the base of our misunderstanding is the idee 
mere that the Americans are Anglo-Saxons even as we 
are. 

One has to live but a short time, even in the New 



England States, in order to realise that our kindred 
oversea are essentially continental, as we are essen- 
tially insular. It is not a question of which is the 
gainer or loser ; it is a question merely of fact. It is 
this factor, the factor of the continental influence, 
which is so profoundly affecting American art, and 
impelling it towards developments altogether indepen- 
dent of Anglo-Saxon art proper. There is, first, the 
sub-factor of climate ; then there is that of widespread 
intellectual and aesthetic education, and that of 
geographical and political advantages ; and last,- but 
certainly not least, that of incessant and complex 
racial admixture. Year by year, month by month 
indeed, the European leaven is at work amid the 
already vast and conglomerate nation which we call 
American. Not only are there cities and towns which 
are as much French, German, Italian, or Scandinavian 
as though situate in the Norlands, in Italy, Germany, or 
France — cities like Milwaukee, for instance, where the 
casual sojourner, ignorant of the Teuton tongue, may 
have to fare hither and thither ere he can find a citizen 
to understand him, — but throughout the country the 
racial tributaries from Europe flow freely. In New York 
itself there are more Germans than in any cit3' of the 
Fatherland with the exception of Berlin. The im- 
migration returns are startling in their suggestiveness. 
This perennial invasion of the States by hordes of 
Swedes, Norwegians, Germans, Russians, Italians, 
French, Spanish, Irish, Scots, and English — what can 
it lead to, what has it led to, but a vital reorganisa- 
tion of the nation at large .'' The Anglo-Saxon element 
is not swamped ; it is not even in any present danger 
of collapse ; but it is simply, at most, the dominant 
strain in what is practically an entirely new race. 
The American nation is new in its amalgam, just as 
England was new when Pict, Celt, Frisian, Angle, Jut, 
Norseman, Dane, and Norman all mingled their tribu- 
tary strains in one national river of race. The England 
of Elizabeth was as foreign to the England of Alfred 
as the latter was to that of the autochthonous tribes ; 
and, in turn, the England of Elizabeth is equally dis- 
tinct from the England of Victoria. The Scot, the 
Irishman, and the Welshman have intermixed with 
the post-Norman English — already complex enough 
with Scandinavian, Teutonic, and French ' blends ' — 
and we are one people now (and are developing to a 
greater homogeneity) in a sense in which we have 
never been. And so, it may be repeated, it is with 
America. A new people is growing up, has grown up, 
in the New World. It is a people allied to us by 
many bonds, but yet alien. With time we may 
become kindred in common aim and effort, but we 
shall be more and more apart in blood-relationship. 
Already the Americans are at most our ' Scotch 
cousins.' Their immediate ancestral sources are inter- 



HOW I BECAME AN A.R.S.A. 



163 



used beyond the ken of the acutest ethnologist. And 
with this far-reaching, penetrating, incessant influx of 
multiform European race and sentiment comes the spirit 
of change, ' mutations infinite.' Few seem to have re- 
cognised the vital Latin element in the great continen- 
tal nation oversea. But the Italians and the French, 
with their northern allies in spirit, the Celts, have had, 
and are exercising, an enormously potent influence in 
the evolution of the American race. With this influence 
come qualities which we, broadly speaking, nationally 
lack. In decorative art, in particular, our kinsfolk 
reacli by instinct what we cumbrously attain to (or 
fall short of) by theory. In their craftsmanship, 
especially in metals and woodwork, they are, at their 
best, as naturally superior to us as we are to the 
modern Germans. 

It does not follow, of course, that sesthetic and 
intellectual development go together. We see the 
contrary among the Teutons of to-daj'. But while 
the intellectual advance in America is far beyond the 
artistic, that is, in the country generall}', the former 
has upon the latter a direct and most potent influence. 
The art-training, though limited compared to what it 
ought to be, is excellent ; and the widespread dis- 
semination of such beautifully illustrated magazines as 
Harper'.i, T/ie Ceniiiri/, Scribiier's, Si. Nicholas, Wide 
Awake, The Cosmopolitan, etc., has an almost incalcul- 
ably good effect. Among no section of Anglo-Saxon- 
dom is art, though as yet mainly in what may be called 
its literary aspect, so eagerly welcomed and, in a sense, 
studied. Editors may trust to their public in a way their 
fellows dare not, or at least do not venture to do, here. 

Even more obvious are the political and geographi- 
cal advantages of art under the Stars and Stripes. 
Freedom for all politically means a welcome not only 
for the Gaul and the Slav and the Teuton, but for tlie 
denizens of the southern and western States and Terri- 
tories, of California and Texas, as much as for those of 
Maine and New York and Massachusetts ; yes, and for 
the Mexican, the Central American, the Brazilian, and 
those of the semi-tropical lands which eastward face 



the Southern Atlantic and westward front the Pacific. 
At this point, however, it is necessary to note the one 
heavy shortcoming, in matters artistic, of which the 
American people, through their government, are guilty. 
The severe and unjustifiable tariff upon foreign pictures 
and sculpture is not only a parochially-fi-amed rebuke 
to the cosmopolitan dignity and freedom of art, but is 
calculated to defeat its avowed object, and retard, 
rather than tend to promote, ' the development of a 
national school.' 

Finally, there is that potent, subtle, mysterious 
factor of climate. Even if the States, from Boston to 
San Francisco, were peopled by a race as relatively 
unmixed as the Southern Chinese, radical divergen- 
cies would be merely a question of time. In the veiy 
nature of things, the period would arrive when the 
native of California, or Utah, or Texas, would regard 
the various aspects of life from a standpoint distinct 
from that of a native of New Hampshire or Connecti- 
cut ; when the whole drift of the mental and physical 
energy of the inhabitants of Florida and Virginia 
would, essentially, dissever them from the Yankees of 
Vermont and the much-mixed dwellers in Illinois, 
But fortunately the climatic factor now works har- 
moniously to one great end. We, here, do not readily 
apprehend the significance of this climatic diversity. 
It is as though all Europe, from Valencia to Tobolsk, 
from Spitzbergen to the Ionian Isles, were subject to 
one central government. 

It is this complexity, it is these diverse influences, 
which make the study of the aesthetic development of 
America so interesting and so significant. It is to 
this complexity and these diverse influences that we 
owe poets so radically distinct as Poe and Emerson, 
Longfellow and Walt Whitman, and novelists so 
widely unrelated as Hawthorne and Howells, Fenimore 
Cooper and Bret Harte ; and, again, to this and these 
that we owe artists such as J. M'Neil Whistler and 
Elihu Vedder, as Mr. Inness and Mr. Sargent, as Mr. 
Frank Millet and John La Farge — prince in the sphere 
of decorative art. William Sharp. 



HOW I BECAME AN A.R.S.A. 



A CHAPTER OF AUTOBIOGRAPHY. 



MY artistic proclivities showed themselves early. 
They must have grown with my teeth and hair. 
It was in my nurse's arms that I paid my first visit to 
the Exhibition of the Roj^al Scottish Academy at the 
unholy age of two. Before we had reached the centre 
octagon I had closed my eyes resolutely, and ray cries 
were heartrending. My nurse put down my anguish 
to the smell of the oil-paint acting on a super-sensitive 
mucous membrane, but I know now that it was the 
sight rather than the smell of it that off'ended me. 
Be that as it may, my critical functions were speedily 
smothered in hot flannel fomentations and castor-oil. 



This reverse served only to divert my genius to its 
proper channel. I now spent the hours in trying to 
sketch my feeding-bottle on the nursery floor with my 
stubby forefinger dipped in milk. Before I was five 
I had passed an eternity with my nose flattened on the 
window-pane, breathing a thick film of moisture on 
which to limn my nurse's profile. The transition to a 
less fleeting medium was only a question of time, and 
the literature of my boyhood sufltred a more than 
usually severe course of marginal illustration. 

Such acute symptoms of genius defied concealment. 
It was only natural that my parents should early decide 



164 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



that I was born an artist. Accordingly, my best 
sketches were collected and submitted to a great 
Academician, who, I have since learned, knew as 
much about art as he did about ballooning or the 
Choctow dialect. He painted pictures, though, which 
is synonymous in the public mind with being an artist, 
and his verdict was awaited with a proper degree of 
awe. This must have been favourable, for one morn- 
ing my father slapped me on the back and gave me a 
shilling, saying gleefully — 

' Some day, my boy, you will be an Academician ! ' 
He thought, poor man, that he was encouraging 
me. 

After this I was taken from school, education being 
unnecessary to an Academician ; and for the next few 
years everything was done to kill the artist in me, so 
that I might fitly fill my glorious destiny. 

The first step in this triumphal progress was the 
School of Design, where I devoted myself to stumping 
and stippling backgrounds to illusive drawings from 
' antique ' casts. Then I spent six months in painting 
a plaster egg-plant to look like dirty india-rubber. 
This achieved, I copied somebody else's Discobolus, 
and put in the bones and muscles from an ' artist's ' 
primer, and so, in due course, was admitted a student 
at the Academy. 

The Life Class disappointed me at first. The model 
was all over knots and veins, and more gone at the 
knees than I had expected. I remember I wondered 
how students were to leani to paint beautiful things by 
looking continually at that ugly man or that still more 
ugly woman who posed alternately with him. But the 
students whispered to me that this was the way to 
become an Academician ; so I ceased to wonder, and 
daubed away like the rest. 

There was no sort of fixed rule at the Life School in 
those days — except that if you met one of the Academi- 
cian visitors in Princes Street, he cut you dead. This rule 
was necessary, of course, to uphold the dignity of the 
Academy. How else could it encourage art } As for 
painting, you could pretty well go as you pleased. 
Some of our teachers were landscape painters wlio 
could not draw the human figure, so we did not bother 
much about drawing. Colour was the main thing. We 
tried to make our studies as like our palettes as pos- 
sible, and to imitate Paul Chalmers — at a distance. 
Sometimes the result was like scarlet fever or the 
measles, but these diseases, though troublesome, are 
very good colour. A full squeeze of rose madder and . 
Vandyke brown flattened down upon awhite ground with 
the palette-knife and gently scumbled with flake white 
and cadmium makes a juicy morsel. It may not have 
been like the model, but our preceptors gloated over 
it and applauded it, circling it with their fingers, and 
almost rubbing it with their noses. But they never 
spoke of beauty or style, or graceful drawing, or com- 
position. When you have become an Academician you 
do not require those things to make your pictures sell. 
Some Academicians do go in for them, but, of course. 



when one has to paint so many big pictures every year, 
one has very little time for anything else. 

But in time I grew accustomed to the Life School, 
and at length, after a desperate competition, I won 
the travelling scholarship. My picture was called 
' Liberty ' — a black slave escaping from his pursuers, 
— and I have since sold it to be used as the design for 
a blacking-box cover. The travelling scholarship made 
me dream of Paris and Rome and Florence, of Leonardo 
and Titian and Botticelli, and hosts of others, some of 
whom might have risen to be Academicians if they 
had lived in the proper place at the proper time. 
Alas ! when the prize-day came I was handed the 
cheque for my travelling expenses, but it amounted 
only to £3, 17s. 9d. ! Somehow the Academy had lost 
the capital intrusted to it for the purpose, and this 
was the interest of what was left. The President 
delivered a charming address, courtly and urbane as 
usual, full of genial and kindly wit, but he did not tell 
me how to travel to Rome and back for £3, 17s. 9d. 
That was what I wanted to know, so the address did 
not impress me so much as it might have done. Of 
course I did not dare to question or complain, so I 
bought a lay-figure with the money — lay-figures are 
essential to Academicians — and determined to pay my 
way myself. 

Fortunately I had just sold some pictures. The 
artistic feeling of the water-butt in our back yard had 
struck me very forcibly some time before, and I had 
painted two large canvases of it. The best of these 
was the view directly in front of the water-butt, show- 
ing its full proportions; but some critics preferred 
another view, taken from the top of the wall, in which 
the butt was seen in sharp perspective. Both pictures 
were well hung at the Academy, and had received un- 
stinted praise, although I observed that more than one 
of the older members looked at them with a jealous 
eye, as though I had been trespassing on forbidden 
ground. When they were in the Exhibition, I used to 
hang about with other students, after the Life Class 
was over in the mornings, watching if any one looked 
like buying my pictures. One day two active members 
of the Association for the Promotion of the Fine Arts 
displayed an unwonted interest in them, and next 
morning I learned that the Association had determined 
to ' promote ' the Fine Arts with my water-butts, and 
had bought them, along with a number of very similar 
pictures. This was my first great success, and after it 
I went to Paris with a light heart and a lighter pocket. 
My experiences of a Parisian studio were somewhat 
disappointing. After I had ' stood ' a round of punch 
(' pawnche,' the students called it), and a good deal of 
horseplay besides, and had settled down to work, I was 
shocked to discover that I had not learned to draw. 
My fellow-students jeered at my efforts ; and when the 
Professor — he is always a Professor in Paris — came 
round, he told me, firmly but kindly, that I must begin 
at the beginning with a cast from the antique. I 
thought of the School of Design and shuddered. Then 



HOW I BECAME AN A.R.S.A. 



165 



I became indignant, and got a fellow who could speak 
French to tell him that I had gone through the 
Academy's School in Edinburgh. He smiled, and 
shrugged his shoulders in an amiable manner. ' I do 
not doubt it,' he said ; ' but will Monsieur explain 
what that has to do with the study of art ? To be an 
artist you must learn to draw and paint.' I might 
have told him that I knew from my experience at the 
Academy that he was wrong, but I bowed my head 
and said nothing. After that my fellow-students were 
cruel and imsympathetic. Some had been in England 
and had seen the Academy. When I tried to paint 
they burst into fits of laughter, and called me ' Monsieur 
I'Academicien/ and told me to regardes the model. 
They said that my colour was like their tricolour — all 
red, white and blue — and that I should get my grand- 
mother to draw in my study for me, and other rude 
remarks which I did not comprehend. In time I began 
to understand about ' tone ' and ' values ' and ' motives,' 
and began to have a glimmering that the water-butt 
school was not the only one. 

After much hard work under Fleury and Boulanger 
(not the General) I sent home one or two modest little 
pictures just to show them at home what I could do. 
To my dismay they were rejected with scorn at the 
Royal Scottish Academy. My patron, the Academician, 
wrote me an indignant letter. I was painting ' French,' 
he told me ; the sooner I gave that up the better. The 
Academy would have none of it. Scottish artists should 
paint in Scotland, and leave France to the French. 
Like the topical song in the Pantomime, art should be 
full of local allusions. 

It -was quite plain that I was on the wrong tack for 
election to the Academy, so I returned to Scotland at 
once and set to work to paint Scotch pictures with a 
quotation from Scott, or Burns, or Tannahill to tickle the 
national palate. But they did not go down either. 
Where my early water-butts had succeeded my pat- 
riotic pictures failed. The Academy only looked at 
them to sky them, and the Royal Association keeping 
to its good old rule to buy ' line ' pictures only, or those 
by its recognised painters, turned up its collective nose 
at them and ignored them. 

Still I struggled on, painting nature with indefa- 
tigable honesty, but feeling in my heart all the while 
that my chances of Academical election were growing 
less. Then the secret leaked out. It was my foreign 
' accent ' (Millais is responsible for the word) to which 
they objected. All my pictures recalled Parisian 
technique, and Parisian technique would not do at the 
R.S.A. Art, they say, is a universal language, but at 
the Academy they speak a pcilois only of limited and 
obsolete vocabulary. I had been painting nature as I 
saw it. In future, if I would become an Academician, 
I must paint nature as the Academy saw it. What 
would you have ? The ways were clear, and it only 
remained for me to choose. On the one side lay art — 
and starvation ; on the other, position, fees, and a fat 
pension. Yet I hesitated. ' Of two evils/ the proverb 



tells us, ' choose the less.' But life is sweet, so I defied 
the proverb and determined to become an Academi- 
cian ! 

For the next few years I never was out of sight of 
an Academician. Wherever one had gone for his 
summer's work, there I went also. First it was a 
figure landscape man, who dotted in little figures which 
were too evidently the result of prolonged and earnest 
study of the family of Noah as represented in a shilling 
edition of the ark. By much insidious flattery I made 
him my friend and learned the secrets of his puppets, 
till you couldn't tell the difference between his pictures 
and mine. Then it was a pure landscape man — a 
painter intended by the gods to manufacture panoramas 
to piano accompaniments — btit who splashed great 
canvases with hills like dumplings and rocks like bonnet- 
boxes. His art was more difiicult, for nature gave no 
hint of it, but he had only one recipe, and that I also 
mastered in time. Then I went for sunsets, glorious 
effects that might have come from dyeworks ; and 
after that for marine pieces — with stage billows, like 
regiments in line — which wei'e easy so soon as you had 
learned the stereotype for waves. 

All the time the public and the Royal Association 
were bu3'ing my pictures greedily, but still I was not 
elected even to an Associateship. Wliy was this ? I 
asked myself. Why did not the Academy recognise 
my success .'' What more must I do to gain election } 
Then again the truth came out. If I would be an 
Academician I must not spoil the market by painting 
better than my brethren. So once more I turned 
aside, and spent much of my time in manufacturing 
pot-boilers, without any reference to art or nature, 
until both hand and eye grew less certain, and I had 
the keen satisfaction of not selling a single picture for 
a whole year. Then at last the Academy grew more 
friendlj^ I was asked to the houses and studios of 
Academicians, and my reputation as a good fellow 
grew as my fame as a painter diminished. Good- 
fellowship, then — not art — waS the golden key to 
open the door of the Academy ; so I painted as badly 
as possible in the Scotch manner, and became the pet 
of all the venerable Academicians. Sometimes I 
wearied of the chase, and had the prize been less 
I might have fainted by the way ; but the comfort- 
able pension in the distance, the regular and substan- 
tial fees, and the glories of the mystic letters ' R.S.A. ' 
gave me heart, and I still continued to manufacture 
bad pictures, and to praise the pictures of my rivals. 
The latter was the hardest part of my task. The early 
defects of my education had limited my vocabulary, 
and many times I found myself at a loss for laudatory 
adjectives. The Academician appetite for praise I 
found to be voracious. Like the serpent who has 
fasted for many days, the painter in the hour of his 
decay can swallow anything, and confidently asks for 
more. When you tell him that his picture is ' sublime,' 
'grand,' 'magnificent,' he just nods his head plea- 
santly, and says with a satisfied smile, ' Yes, I thought 



* * * * 



166 THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 

I had got it that time ' ; and when you add that his painting a better picture than his ; but on the last 

rival is nowhere in comparison, he nods his head again occasion I induced my wife's cousin — who has be- 

and laughs superciliously. ' Pot-boilers,' he says ; ' he come my enemy since — to buy his one, so we are 

can't paint : we only elected him out of charity.' friends again. At present I have got a clear majority 

It took me a long time to get a sufficient number of pledged to vote for me at the next election. They 

Academicians on my side, and I had to exercise some have ruined my painting, so if they do not make me 

caution lest they should report to each other. Twice an Associate I shall become an art critic, and let them 

I nearly lost hold of one slippery Academician by have it hot all round. 



ISOLATION. 

FROM the uneven ground great columns spring 
To dim far heights. At vespers or at nones 
The one-voiced dialogue in shouts or moans 
Through the triforium gloom floats echoing. 
No unseen choirs sweet showers of music fling : 

Below the altar, on these worn grey stones. 
While solemn sacrifice my soul atones, 
I serve myself the mass myself must sing. 

Alone I stand, and here for ever swing 

This censer, whence large curls of incense rise 
Round clustered pillars to the clerestories. 

This side the western door, with offering. 

No sepai'ate soul my altar may attend : 
Alone, apart I stand until the end. 

Havelock Ellis. 



IN THE MUSEUM. 

COURT after court filled full with treasures rare 
And beautiful ; gems, armour, pictures fair. 
Marbles that had not felt for many a day 
The master's hand ; vessels of priceless ware. 

Whose makers were this long time of the clay 
From which alike they sprang. And — 'mid them all 
Stood a bronze Buddha, that from sunlit land 

Of dreaming and quaint fancies had come here — 
Serene, impassive, now as when shrill call 

Of prayerful devotees had pierced the clear 
Pure air. Then was he mighty, and the breezes fanned 
Sweet spices to him — Buddha, Lord of all ! 
But now a lost god in a foreign land 
He waited patiently. 

Once there came 

A swarthy, silent man, dark, almond-eyed. 
Clad in strange silken robes of varied hue, 
Who wandered listlessly with careless view 

Of the rich fi-agments heaped on every side. 

Till he came suddenly before the god — 

Stood for a moment sadly — then with head 
All humbly bent, though bitter words he said. 

Unheeding those who stopped to point and nod, 

Bowed himself down and prayed. Then he arose 
And, once more bending low while on his face 

A teardrop glistened, laid a withered rose 

At Buddha's feet — and hastened from the place. 

And Buddha smiled, 
And waited patiently. 

Edward F. Strange. 



STUDENTS' WORK AT SOUTH KENSINGTON— A REPLY 



167 



STUDENTS' WORK AT SOUTH KENSINGTON— A REPLY. 



IT would seem a pity that the writer of the article 
in the last number of this magazine entitled 
' Students' Work at South Kensington ' had but re- 
membered that fable of ^sop which tells of the man 
who blew hot and cold with the same breath. The 
statements made as to the bad qualities of the exhibi- 
tion were so much qualified by his praise of certain 
sections of and particular works in it, that we rise up 
as Balak did after hearing the prophetic utterances 
of Balaam, filled with a wonder as to which was 
intended, the blessing or the cursing. One could have 
bonie with either, but is dissatisfied with so candid an 
admixture of both ; and though South Kensington does 
not need the defence which this rejoinder would seem 
to imply, it were well to form a more dispassionate 
judgment than is arrived at in the article in question. 

The question is asked, ' Can the Art of Design be 
taught, and if it can, does South Kensington employ 
the right methods of education ? ' The answer is, 
'The Art of Design cannot be taught.' John Ruskin 
never uttered a truer aphorism than ' Drawing may be 
taught by tutors, but design only by Heaven ; ' and 
though it may be possible to meet Heaven half-way in 
the matter. South Kensington issues no system nor 
has it any codified method of education by which it 
hopes to bridge over the void. Any method which 
may be adopted to attempt this bridging over rests 
entirely in the hands of the design masters of indi- 
vidual schools, and is not the result of any set of 
instructions issued from South Kensington, or any 
system officially sanctioned by that department. The 
test of any method, however, lies in the goodness and 
thoroughness of the results arrived at, and here we are 
met by the impeachment both of the works them- 
selves on account of their badness, and of the sup- 
posed system which brings about such results. 

As rightly stated, students do many things they 
should not have done, and leave undone those things 
they should have done^ and for this the writer readily 
forgives them ; but it would have been far more profit- 
able and useful if, instead of making the sweeping- 
assertions he does, he had taken some definite standard 
afforded by existing work produced by some body of 
artists actively engaged in the execution of art work, 
and accepted by competent authorities as examples of 
how art work should be executed, whether as to 
design or as to method, and compared the National 
Competition results with such specimens of work ; 
the conclusions he arrives at would have been more 
readily understood. Such a comparison, especially on 
the subject of Decorative Design, is possible. A visit 
to the National Competition drawings recently on 
view in the galleries of the South Kensington Museum, 



and another paid to the present exhibition of the Arts 
and Crafts at the New Gallery, leave somewhat the 
same impression behind. The exhibits in such cases 
as by their presence in both galleries were capable of 
comparison, seemed curiously out of touch with the 
major part of the products of modern commercial 
design as displayed in the shop windows, or seen in 
the warehouses of our larger cities and towns, and 
both seemed animated with the same spirit of work, 
so much so that one could fancy that in many 
instances the same hands had executed the exhibits 
in the two places of exhibition. The members of the 
Society of the Arts and Crafts profess both by words 
and deeds to be striving to do the best thing in the 
best manner, and we learn by statement in the Presi- 
dent's introduction in their current catalogue that 
they are opposed to the modern commercial methods 
of production and design, and by implication that the 
majority of the manufacturers is opposed to them. 
This statement is further reiterated by another pro- 
minent member of the society, Mr. William Morris, 
and is briefly one of the reasons which brought about 
the founding of the society. But these two foremost 
of our designers are examiners in the National Competi- 
tion in the subject of Applied Design, and it may be 
that their influence as exercised in their decisions has 
brought about that opposition alike to South Kensing- 
ton and its pupils which the writer states to be held 
by many important manufacturers. That such opposi- 
tion does exist no one can deny, but unless the 
majority of the designers in actual employment, or of 
those aspiring to the profession, have not received, or 
are not receiving such education as they possess in 
Schools of Art, the presence of other institutions 
capable of producing a supply of designers to meet 
the somewhat large demand has yet to be accounted 
for. 

But an admission follows as to the manufacturer. 
We learn that ' he may not always understand art, . . . 
but what he needs is an abundance of fresh ideas and 
original designs.' Happily, manufacturers such as 
these are few in number, but if this admission be 
granted, one is somewhat curious to know how, under 
the circumstances, the manufacturer is in a position 
to know either when an idea is fresh or a design 
original. Years ago it was held that 'that design is 
the best which sells the best ' ; and though this is not 
now universally believed, it takes a great deal of time 
to convince certain people that such is not the case, 
and to get them to believe that public or popular 
taste and good art are not always synonymous terms. 
But it may be urged, ' Is not the primary function of 
a School of Art to supply the needs of our manu- 



168 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



facturei's ? and as stated in the article, " South Ken- 
sington and its branches alone make design their 
foremost endeavour." ' The latter they certainly do 
with at least the best possible intention, if not result ; 
but if, as before stated, the manufacturer ' may not 
always understand art,' it becomes a somewhat difficult 
task to supply his needs, and the sooner he becomes 
educated the better for the attempts South Kensington 
makes to supply him. But this supply needs some 
explanation, and herein lies the gist of the whole 
mattei\ Schools of Art are not commercial establish- 
ments for the supply of designs to any particular 
manufacturer or any one manufacture, but artistic 
institutions where men are taught how to draw, are 
initiated into the principles of ornament, and where 
practicable applied designs are made ; and so designers 
are produced who go out, not full of a crop of ready- 
made ideas, but simply as educated workmen at the 
service of anj"^ manufacturer desirous of giving them 
employment, — and this is not only a distinction but a 
difference not always understood. Any method which 
may be employed to bring about this end rests en- 
tirely with individual schools, whose masters do not 
always think that because a design is derivative it is 
therefore bad, or that a designer is working wrongly 
because he is swayed by the memories of former work 
not his own, neither the fashion of to-day nor the 
whim of yesterday, but work that has stood the test 
of years as proof of its goodness. Probably the de- 
signer is taught that originality as understood in trade 
circles is not always a desirable factor, and that novelty, 
whether in composition or treatment done to please 
a public taste, may possess neither novelty nor new- 
ness in the best sense of his art. 

Space does not permit following the writer through 
his detailed criticism, but his remarks upon antique 
figures, studies of drapery and of flowers, though not 
given as special, may be met by referrmg to an 
authority apparently a little unread. Sir Joshua 
Reynolds, in his first discourse, speaks of students pre- 
ferring ' splendid negligence to painful and humiliating 
exactness,' and the whole of the paragraph from which 
this quotation is taken forms a relevant comment upon 
this portion of the article. No antique drawing in the 
exhibition displayed half the 'laborious detail' and 
'niggling petty work' demanded of a student working 
in the schools of the Royal Academy, for example. 
The drawings from the life are what they were in- 
tended to be, namely studies of the model, and that 
this is sometimes considered not a demerit but an 
absolute merit the same august authority before 
mentioned would seem to imply when he, still in his 
first discourse, considers it a defect that 'in the 
methods of education pursued in all the academies I 
ever visited,- the error is that students never draw 
exactly from the living models they have before them,' 
and further considers this 'the obstacle that has 



stopped the progress of many young men of real 
genius.' Of course the mention of this authority may 
serve only to confirm the belief in the conservatism of 
South Kensington, but there be many among us con- 
servative enough to wish to draw in the nineteenth 
century like Michael Angelo did in the sixteenth, or 
to paint to-day like Velasquez did in the years gone 
by. 

As to the means which the writer suggests should be 
taken to put the wrong right, and knock the ' galling 
useless fetters ' off, which cramp the powers of the 
student, a word may suffice. It should, however, be 
stated that if there be fetters they are remarkably 
light, and somehow seem to leave the student free to 
do what he likes how he likes ; and of that fact the 
diversity of choice of subject and method of execution 
which the past exhibition afforded is the best proof. 
I am not sure whether the qualities presumed to please 
the higher officials are supposed to infliience the 
decision of the examiners, which latter are admitted 
to be ' generally artists of ripe wisdom and experience,' 
or not. If so, something is of course radically wrong, 
but we learn elsewhere in the article that in decorative 
design every other one of the works submitted ' was in 
more or less palpable imitation of the styles of the two 
examiners themselves.' The influence of the higher 
officials is therefore very slight in this section, and 
probably it may be found that the requirements of the 
examiners in the other sections were similarly met. 
But if these examiners are the best men the country 
can afford, and this seems generally to be admitted, 
w'e have to fall back upon the theory that the whole 
standard of the exhibition was low, and that if the 
works exhibited were the best, then bad is the best. 
This, howevei-, is too sweeping an assertion to be at 
once admitted, and I fall back upon the comparison 
I made above between the National Competition 
exhibition and that of the present Arts and Crafts for 
ray answer, and boldly contend that the standard of 
excellence sought for and arrived at in the works of 
the National Competition bears a more than passable 
comparison with the works now on show at the New 
Gallery, which latter are, in the eyes of their exhibi- 
tors, not abreast with, but in advance of the art 
current in, and accepted by, the present market. 
Should South Kensington be hampered by a too 
tightly tied red tape, or lack an interest in contem- 
porary taste, it may be because the former seems 
necessary to the existence of any State bureau, and 
needs only that defence which Charles Dickens gave 
to the Circumlocution Office ; and the latter because 
contemporary taste needs the education which it is the 
endeavour of South Kensington to supply, by keeping 
as close a union as possible with all that is living and 
progressive in the art of to-day. 

Francis H. Newberv, 
Head-Master, Glasgow School uf Art. 



170 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



REVIEW. 



A CENTURY OF ARTISTS: A Memorial of the 
Glasgow International Exhibition 1888. Glas- 
gow : James MacLehose & Sons. 

THE departure made in the title of the memorial 
catalogue of the loan collection at the Glasgow 
Exhibition of 1888 from the lines of the accurately 
descriptive title of the Edinburgh catalogue is scarcely 
one to be commended. The imposing sound of the 
phrase ' A Century of Artists ' is far from being out of 
keeping with the sumptuous appearance of the volume ; 
yet when the various waistcoats which help out its 
royal bulk have been stripped from off it, one comes 
at last to nothing, or, at least, to what, considered as 
a book, is neighbour to nothing — an imperfectly 
methodised catalogue. With less pretension, its pre- 
decessor had more real claim to a place in the litera- 
ture of Art. The prefatory note on Romanticism was 
a fairly serviceable study, and the individual artists of 
the French and Dutch Romantic Schools were handled 
with interest and even with moderation. In the new 
volume, not only has the literai'y workmanship clearly 
cost the writer less, but the general scheme of the 
book, or rather the absence of scheme other than that 
of an A B C time-table, inevitably detracts from its 
value. It may indeed be questioned if any justifica- 
tion can really be found for the issue of costly memorial 
volumes of the Ccnturij kind. The unmethodical 
huddling together of all kinds of works painted by, 
but not necessarily typical of the best work of, a num- 
ber of artists of different schools, is unhappily almost 
the only way in which the majority of us are at all able 
to become acquainted with artists and their work. It 
is better than nothing, but it needs the comparison of 
an artist's woi-ks through a series of such collections — 
the setting of sundry good Constables and poor Corots 
to-day against sundry good Corots and poor Constables 
to-morrow — before a just judgment can be reached. 
Given such an exhibition, however, straightway there 
appear the publisher and the art critic, and the huddle 
is perpetuated in a volume of which the luxuriousness 
is apt to be in inverse ratio to its utility. Little man 
Y, with half a dozen of his best pictures, rubs shoulders 
complacently with great man X, who happens to be 
represented by one or two inferior works only ; and a 
fair type and fat paper combine to give no less honour- 
able prominence to the worthy nobodies who con- 
tributed to the show. One systematic study is of 
more real value than many such volumes, to all except 
those whose names appear in them. From any higher 
point of view the pedant in Hierocles, who carried a 
brick about in his pocket as a specimen of the house 
he had for sale, is not untypical of what is practically 
an attempt to convey some knowledge of the Palace 
of Art by means of casual bricks pushed out from 
odd corners. 



It is not, however, on general lines alone that the 
Cenlui'i/ of Artists is unsatisfactory. The eye of the 
book-lover lingers on the ample and well-balanced 
page ; the hand passes over the rich rough-edged 
paper with something like a caress. But while most 
of the illustrations are as admirable as one could wish, 
some are scarcely superior in artistic merit to the 
suggestions of pictures given in the cheap Salon and 
Academy Catalogues. In some cases they have been 
injured by the embossing of the surface of the paper 
by the print upon the other side of the page ; in others 
the method of reproduction chosen has not been that 
best suited to the picture. The many processes now 
available for publications of this class are not to be 
used indiscriminately. A picture will often reproduce 
by process as well as, or even more admirably than, by 
etching, while one which is susceptible of perfect 
reproduction by etching will often be a mere blotch 
when submitted to one of the mechanical processes ; and 
the judgment shown in the selection of the method, 
or of the proof under the method, has not been in- 
variably happy in result. The short verbal descriptions 
are often necessary to the intelligibility of the illustra- 
tion, and it is probable that even then there will be 
occasional dissatisfaction over indecipherable passages. 
For instance, the fine Turner, ' Boats carrying out 
anchors and cables to Dutch man-of-war,' from a 
drawing by Mr. Alexander Roche, apparently suffers 
badly in the reproduction, and the statement that 
there is a party of peasants loading a cart in the left 
of Alexander Fraser's picture demands faith enough 
to support a whole theology. There . is no leveller 
in art like a mechanical process indiscriminately 
applied. 

A more serious charge connects itself with some of 
the literary matter in the volume. Mr. Henley's bio- 
graphical and critical sketches on Corot, Coui'bet, Dau- 
bigny. Decamps, Delacroix, Diaz, Edouard Frere, Millet, 
Rousseau, and Troyon, and the portion of the Note on 
Romanticism dealing with Constable, may have been all 
very excellent. But it was scarcely fair to the pur- 
chaser, apart from the suggestion of barrenness, to 
transplant bodily these ten articles and the Constable 
fragment from the Edinburgh volume to that on the 
Glasgow collection, especially as the latter may be con- 
sidered in some sense the second of a series. Did Mr. 
Henley think that no one who bought the first would 
buy the second } Or did he think, though no one cried 
' encore,' that the public could not have too much of 
a good thing ? As a matter of fact, Mr. Henley's 
work is too emphatic and individual to bear repetition, 
— at all events, with so little interval. What is permis- 
sible to a prosing economist like MacCuUoch, who 
shovels his matter from journal to magazine, and from 
magazine to volume, is not permissible to a writer of 
such im]iressive personality as Mr. Henley. 



REVIEW- 'A CENTURY OF ARTISTS' 



171 



The same enchantment with, and reiteration of, an 
idea or set of ideas shows itself in the details of the 
book. In the present catalogue Mr. Henley has assumed 
a mission. At intervals in the wilderness of picture- 
titles constituting the catalogue proper he lifts up his 
voice and cries aloud ; and his utterance, like that of 
most men with a mission, tends to become somewhat 
monotonous. In itself the cry, as will be seen, is scarcely 
a novel one, though in Mr. Henley's case it seems only 
recently to have become articulate or, at least, vocifer- 
ous. A picture, we are assured again and again, is 
primarily an ' arrangement in paint.' This is the single 
string on which Mr. Henley has elected to fiddle while 
Ruskin is burning. It is the burden of the biographical 
and critical song — a burden not without excellence, 
but one which becomes a weariness as the tag to half 
a century of verses. ' We English have alwa3S re- 
garded art as nothing if not personal, and have valued 
our artists, not according to their place in the hierarchy 
of painl, but according as we found them interesting, 
mysterious, engaging, and the like.' The ideal is ' to 
look upon paint as so much visible beauty, and not to 
be concerned with its moral significance or its 
unpictorial ' (i.e. other than pictorial) ' suggestiveness.' 
An artist is great in proportion to his faculty as ' an 
exponent of the capacities of paint.' 'To exist as an 
arrangement of paint is the first condition of excellence 
in a picture.' ' Linnell's mastery of paint is never 
conspicuous save in its absence.' ' Morland's pictures 
are nothing if not arrangements in paint.' Landseer 
' survives to us not as an artist in paint, but as 
the author of a vast amount of literature in two 
dimensions.' Raeburn is ' able to vocalise in terms of 
paint the capacity of portraiture ' ; ' here unmistakably 
is paint, is accomplishment, is art.' 

If space permitted, it might be desirable to touch 
on certain questions of style involved in such phrases 
as those quoted, the arbitrariness of some of the ex- 
pressions, the use of a species of slang which in less 
practised literary hands would readily become the cant 
phrases of a sect. Notice, too, might be taken of pas- 
sages in which the fetters of style relax and the pose 
ends in a sprawl, as in the criticism of De Nittis : 'He 
was interested above all things in light and atmosphere, 
or at least in as much of them as were revealed to him. 
He was interested in other things of course — the effect of 
a bonnet, the aspect of a running victoria, the impres- 
sion of a man in collars and trousei's and a cigarette, and 
all that sort of object.' The point of central interest, 
however, lies in the perpetual and disparaging contrast 
between the superior man who can appreciate paint for 
paint's sake, and the man who looks to art for moral 
and spiritual meanings, who is content to do without 
painting if only he can get a little 'disguised literature.' 
The genesis of Mr. Henley's gospel of paint is easily 
traceable. His message is (to go no further back) that 
of Mr. Whistler applied with little change to the elabo- 
ration of a catalogue. Mr. Whistler should feel flattered. 
Here is ' the unattached iniddleman in art, at whom as 



a class he railed, rising up to echo his complaints that 
' Beauty is confounded witli Virtue,' that 'before a work 
of art it is asked, "What good shall it do."""' that 'people 
have acquired the habit of looking not at a picture but 
through it at some human fact,' that pictures have come 
to be considered absolutely from a literary point of 
view, not as exquisite harmonies in form and colour, 
or, to put it more coarsely, as paint. The seed sown 
at ten o'clock has borne fruit in the morning, modified 
somewhat, if not marred, by conditions of soil and 
climate, but of clearly cognisable origin. The enemy 
that sowed them is — Mr. Whistler. As the result of 
this inspiration, Mr. Henley, it is needless to say, has 
scant mercy upon such men as Blake and Rossetti and 
Turner and Ruskin. He dismisses them to their own 
place with the air of the Last Judgment. ' Verily God 
is great ! ' says Tsu-Yu to Tzu-ssu in the Chinese 
story, ' see how he has doubled me up ' ; and by any 
similar estimate of greatness, from the treatment of 
Rossetti and Ruskin in the Cenluri/, Mr. Henley must be 
accorded a very high place in the hierarchy of paint. 

Mortimer Wheeler. 

* ^ * We wish to acknowledge most cordially our 
indebtedness to Messrs. James MacLehose & Son, to 
Messrs. T. & A. Constable, and to the owners of the 
pictures for permission to reproduce five illustrations 
from the volume. These illustrations are reproduc- 
tions of drawings by Mr. Alexander Roche from the 
following pictures : — 

'The Sisters' — Lady Erne and Lady Dillon. By 
Thomas Gainsborough, R.A. (1727-1788). The 
property of Sir Chas. Tennant, Bart. 
' Ploughing' — Water-colour by Anton Mauve (1838- 
1887). The property of J. Carfrae Alston, Esq. 
'English Landscape.' By John Constable (1776- 
1837). The property of Joseph Henderson, Esq. 
' A Group of Boys ' — Study for ' The Village School 
Examination.' By Sir George Harvey, P.Il.S.A. 
(1806-1876). The property of Charles Halker- 
ston, Esq. 
Scene from ' Peveril of the Peak.' — Peveril con- 
ducting Alice Bridgenorth and Fenella through 
the streets of London. By William Quiller 
Orchardson, R.A. (b. 1835). The property of 
James Donald, Esq. 
The work of the artists who have interpreted the 
examples of the masters thoroughly deserves honour- 
able mention. Mr. Roche has done the major part of the 
work, and on the whole he has done it extremely well. 
He has unquestionably caught with most apt dexterity 
the varied mannerisms of the artists he has had to 
interpret. His Delacroix, Orchardson, Pettie, Harvey, 
Pinwell, and Mauve are marvellously clever transla- 
tions. Mr. William Hole's interpretation of Corot, Mr. 
W. Strang's excellent etching of Charles Mackay, after 
Sir Daniel Macnee, and his Sir David Wilkie after 
the artist's portrait of himself, are bits of strong and 
vigorous work. Ed. 



• r*5f. 





174 



THE SCOITISH AUT REVIEW 



THE 'ARTS AND CllAFTS,' 1889. 



INGRATITUDE, that meanest vice of all the fell 
crew, is rarely admitted whether we make confes- 
sion to an intimate friend, or in the limited publicity of 
art criticism. Consequently, to observe that the latest 
effort of the ' Arts and Crafts ' to beautify our dun life 
is subjected to querulous comment in many quarters 
ought not to surprise any one. Not so long ago, it was 
correct for all who aspired to ' culture' to become en- 
thusiastic over the work of Mr. Morris and Mr. Crane, 
and to praise the De Morgan tiles and Benson metal- 
work ; yet signs are not wanting to show that the 
' higher criticism ' is beginning to weary of its toy, and 
to demand newer playthings. 

Most artistic efforts, be they poems, pictures, or 
designs, pass tin-ough three stages before they find 
their ultimate level : first they are assailed with un- 
mitigated abuse, then polluted by ignorant adulation, 
and thirdly, mildly attacked for no particular reason 
except that both the novelty of disgust and of delight 
have alike grown stale and wearisome to their former 
champions. The movement towards decoration, that 
first found speech in pseudo-Gothicism, and later in 
so-called jEstheticism, is now chiefly represented by 
the ' small and unpretentious society ' to which Mi-. 
Morris ' has the honour to belong.' We are too close 
to this movement to adjudge its ultimate place in the 
history of the reign of Queen Victoria. For new forces 
in art are hardly recognised by their contemporaries. 
Shakespeare was not to the Elizabethans the supreme 
and overwhelming figure of his age. We only now 
begin faintly to realise the influence of Dante Gabriel 
Rossetti on the mood of the last twenty years. So in 
decorative art, an easy sneer at Morris & Co. is popular. 
To find out the inconsistencies and shortcomings of the 
Arts and Craftsmen is a parochial pleasure to critics. 
We go down humbly on our knees to artists of hardly 
greater power who have fortunately escaped the honour 
of sharing the census with us, but to balance our servile 
adoration make contemptuous gestures at living ones. 

But this explanation of the diminished favour critics 
have awarded to the exhibition this year is scarcely ex- 
haustive. It is a patent defect that those who profess 
to be interested in collections of works of art publicly 
shown demand an instantaneous and unqualified state- 
mentof theposition held by each successive show with re- 
ference to previous exhibitions. Is it a good Academy .' 
Is it a better Grosvenor than last year ? are the ques- 
tions that must be answered after a cursory glance on 
the press-day. Surely futile queries like these might 
join the army of such unnecessary demands as 'Who 
wrote the Lcilcrs of Junius ?' or, 'Does the hen imply a 
previous egg, or the egg imply a previous hen .' ' 'I'o 
nicely adjudge the relative position of eight hundred 
objects of widely dissimilar character shown in October 
1889, comjKu-ed with five hundred on view twelve 



months ago, is simply impossible to the most patient 
observer after but a few hours more or less disturbed 
inspection. 

Another very important point must not be over- 
looked. To give a second exhibition on similar lines 
as the first — to sing the same song twice successively — 
or to write a poem in the same metre on a kindred sub- 
ject — and yet provoke the applause that greeted the 
first presentation of show, song, or rhyme, is obviously 
almost impossible. If the new thing is quite as good 
as the first, then, devoid of novelty, it is but as ' dainties 
dressed again.' To evoke sjjontaneous praise, it must 
be tenfold more vivid, more sensational, on its second 
display, if it would rouse satiated taste to declare it 
an advance upon the original previously enjoyed. 

An attempt to discount the sterner criticism this 
year's show has drawn upon its promoters is not by 
any means offered as special pleading to minimise the 
effect of animadversions that are possibly well deserved, 
much less to suggest that any attempt to deprecate 
free expression of adverse taste is desirable. Yet it 
seems only fair to remember that the above reasons 
for delaying a hasty judgment may be true, although 
they can nowise be called new. 

Last year Mr. Burne Jones contributed largely from 
the work of a long period. Some of his designs were 
magnificent achievements, and among the finest things 
exhibited. This year a cartoon (.56), not in his best 
manner, a jjiece of Ai-ras tapestry woven after his 
design, and a few panels decorating various objects, 
are all he has sent. It is hazardous to insist that this 
loss has unduly biassed those who profess to find the 
show less interesting, but that it is an important factor 
in their faint praise is quite likely. 

Mr. Walter Crane has bravely undertaken a parlous 
quest to find sculpturesque beauty in modern society 
figures. His bas-reliefs (86, 90, 92) of youths and 
maidens in evening dress, hardly modified from the 
style of the fashion papers, have failed to gain approval. 
Whether this is owing to their subject, or to a less 
noble treatment than this prolific designer's very best, 
may be left an open question ; but it is certain that 
like some expressions in Walt Wliitman's Leaves of 
Grass, which, as a thoughtful critic pointed out, insen- 
sibly coloured the whole book, so these few panels 
persist in coming to the foreground whenever a 
mental picture of the whole exhibition is conjured 
from one's memory. 

I'he splendid fabrics tliat Mr. William Morris still 
produces may have lost their novelty ; but their beauty, 
fitness, and intrinsic purity of texture deserve all 
praise. To enumerate a tithe of his exhibits, and to 
do justice to the assistants who aided in their manu- 
facture, as duly recorded in the catalogue, is simply 
impossible. For the most part the articles from the 



THE ' ARTS AND CRAFTS,' 1889 



175 



firm of Morris & Co. are woven goods, but an elabor- 
ately inlaid cabinet (412), designed by G. Jack, and a 
carved one (437) by the same artist, are two prominent 
exceptions. 

By using a sini])ly contrived dark room, stained glass 
is shown with the transmitted light absolutely necessaiy 
to display its beauties, yet it is to be regretted that 
more important work has not found place therein. 
Although the small panel designed by J. R. Spence 
(619) is sumptuously rich in colour, it is relatively small. 
The care bestowed upon the arrangement of this section 
is an example of the whole gallery, wherein every 
number is as well placed as if it were the solitary 
thing wortli inspection ; more than that, the various 
works are so arranged that they aid instead of hinder- 
ing the effect of widely different substances. The 
Guild of Arts and f'rafts, under the directorship of 
Mr. C. R. Ashbee, send nearly forty separate exhibits. 
In their cabinet-work and repousse metal, they have 
specimens second to none in the galleries. The work 
of J. Pearson is wonderfully wrought in the true spirit 
of hammered metal. The furniture, somewhat archaic 
and a little self-conscious in its novelty, is yet far 
ahead of the average exhibited. The Century Guild 
is not officially represented, although several of its 
members contribute individual woi-k — notably Mr. 
Selwyn Image, whose strongly original designs in Nos. 
79, 80, 82, 134, 139 are less derivative than most 
modern art. In spite of their antique feeling, they 
convey the idea of new creations. 

The black-and-white work, and designs for various 
manufactures, are singularly unequal. Mr. R. Hallward 
strikes a new, strong note in 651, 6.52 ; Mr. Lewis 
Day has sent a goodly nimnber of his elegant draw- 
ings ; Messrs. Jeffreys show some gorgeous wall decora- 
tions, designed by Mr. Walter Crane and others ; but, 
in spite of the high quality of all these things, the re- 
proach (if it be one) that the windows of our best shops 
offer plenty equally good is not easy to parry. 

The amateur is somewhat rampant, it is true ; but 
the line between professional and amateur art is not 
a division between good and bad. On either side ai'e 
startling contradictions to such a hasty sortment : the 



bookbinding in the exhibition, however its creators 
may rank socially, is entirely on the side of good, and 
challenges comparison with the most illustrious treasures 
of the art. 

The Committee, whose exertions have made the 
])resent show possible, have a hard task before them. 
When they show ordinai-y, everyday things, they 
are accused of turning the show into a mere com- 
mercial exhibition. If, on the other hand, they confine 
themselves to unique and exceptional work, many prac- 
tical difficulties are sure to arise. From the pecuniary 
point of view, work so costly and individual as certain 
exhibits of last year — which are without parallel in 
this collection — is hardly likely to be produced in 
suflicient quantity for an annual exhibition. The 
demand is not great enough to repay the cost of such 
production, even if the artists were equal to the strain 
involved. Nor would abnormal and exhaustive efforts 
be deemed of practical utility in the education of 
popular taste by those who demur to manufacturers' 
contributions. Thus, from the standpoint of an out- 
sider, the obstacles in the way of an annual exhibition 
within its present lines appear well-nigh fatal. Yet 
in spite of all that could be said against the show — 
and the ' all ' is not a very terrible indictment — would it 
not be more politic to be grateful for the present good, 
and hope for increased excellence ? That the Arts and 
Ci'aftsmen are trying, in their way, to raise public taste, 
few could be I'ash enough to deny. That such taste 
needs improvement goes without saying, but there 
are many schools of design totally unrepresented in 
its present exhibition that still find favour with men 
of unquestioned taste. To attract the support ot 
these, and remove the easy objection that the 'Arts 
and Crafts ' recognises but one style of art and but 
one period worth reviving, would surely be the wiser 
course for those who conscientiously prefer their own 
canons of taste. For if from ill considered opposition 
the movement, now so full of vitality, were crushed, it 
would perhaps be long ere its detractors founded a 
more worthy successor to a society that is at least 
helping to remove the old reproach that Englishmen 
care little for beautiful surroundings. 



PARIS CAUSERIE. 



rpi 



Paris, Ocloher 1889. 
^HE great musical event of the Exhibition season 
has been the recent performance at the Palais 
de ITndustrie of the Ode Triomplialc, in honour of the 
Centenary of 1789, poem and nuisic by Augusta 
Holmes. However, before speaking of the Ode, allow 
me to introduce you to its author. Mademoiselle 
Holmes is Irish by birth, and, though quite a Parisian, 
still proud of her Hibernian origin. Fair as fair can 
be — blonde comme les hies, as the French so prettily say 
— she speaks English and French with equal ease, a 



charming and very talented woman. Mademoiselle 
Holmes is no new-comer in the musical world. Besides 
a certain number of fugitive compositions, two patriotic 
symphonies : Irlande ! and Pologne / were received 
some years ago with applause by the connoisseur 
audience of the Pasdeloup Popular Concerts. About 
eight years since a more ambitious work, a dramatic 
symphony in four parts, entitled Les Argonuutes, was 
also played with success at Pasdeloup's. In this work, 
as in all the poems Mademoiselle Holmes has written, 
and all the music she has composed, the key-note is 



176 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



ardent Gallic patriotism allied to the desire to repro- 
duce in a modei'ii sense the classical form of Greek 
melodrama. This is very marked in Liidii.i pro Patria, 
poeme sijmpkoiiiqiie, played last winter at the Conser- 
vatoire Concerts. In this work the Reciter, or Solo, 
declaims to the People of the beauty and goodness of 
Mother Earth, and of their duty to Fatherland, to 
which the Choi'us answers in fitting terms, while 
youths and maidens sing of Love and the Pleasures of 
Youth. 

When it was pi-oposed to celebrate the ' '89 Cen- 
tenary ' by a series of public fetes, it occurred to Made- 
moiselle Holmes that a Grand Musical Poem might be 
composed for the occasion, and produced on a grand 
scale in public, after the fashion of the Greek stage. 
It also happened that the Paris Municipal Council had 
founded a concours for a Great Musical Festival in 
honour of the Republic, and that all the competitors 
had failed in producing a work of sufficient merit. 
This was Mademoiselle Holmes's opportunity, so she 
immediately set to work to finish her Ode Ttiomphale, 
which, after some discussion as to allowing a woman 
the merit of composing such a work, was accepted. 
No expense was spared (I believe the three unique 
performances cost nearly £12,000), and Mademoiselle 
Holmes set to work heart and soul to realise her pro- 
jected festival. She organised everything herself, 
drew the plans of the vast stage 45 metres in width 
and breadth, and its proscenium 55 metres high. She 
gathered together the 1200 performers, who were 
placed under the able leadership of Mr. Colonne. 
The immense hall of the Palais was tastefully decor- 
ated with red velvet and gold hangings, a splendid 
series of Gobelin tapestries and foliage hid the bare 
walls, while floods of electric light illuminated the 
densely crowded auditorium. President Carnot and 
Madame Carnot and some twenty thousand per- 
sons were on the first evening guests of the Parisian 
Municipality. After a short and solemn introduction 
played by the string instruments, followed by loud 
trumpet-calls, the curtain is drawn aside and displays 
a splendid landscape radiant in the sunlight, in its 
midst, on a slight elevation, stands an altar, partly 
covered by the broad folds of the tricolour flag. Re- 
presentatives of all who labour and toil — peasants and 
workmen, fishermen, soldiers, sailors, scientists, and 
artists, also a band of youths and maidens led by a 
winged Cupid — come each in turn and in appropriate 
choruses sing the praise of La France, personified by 
the Repiihliqiie Liheratrlce et Pacifique, who alone can 
confer liberty and honour, peace and prosperity on the 
people of the earth. Suddenly the sky becomes 
overcast, lightning flashes and loud peals of thunder 
follow, a solemn funeral march is heard, and a veiled 
figure suddenly appears in the midst of the people ; 
she appeals earnestly to all around to deliver her from 
bondage, but the multitude, powerless to do anything 
of themselves, point towards the altar, and in a sort of 
dirge call upon the Goddess to appear and deliver 



sufl^ering Humanity. Amidst an effulgence of light 
the Goddess makes her appearance on the altar. She 
is magnificently draped in an azure colour peplum 
over a white tunic, on her head she wears the Phry- 
gian cap over a circlet of golden corn. Her left hand 
rests on the sword of Justice, and in her right hand 
she holds an olive branch. All the assistants bow 
down their heads before this splendid apparition, while 
the Republic sings in a loud, clear voice — 

' Venez a moi, vous qui souffrez pour la Justice ! 
Pauvres, desherites, martyrs, suivez ma loi ; 
II faut que le clairon terrible retentisse . . . 
La Justice, c'est moi ! 



A la source de la verite 
Que riiomme delivre du mal se desaltere, 
Car la iniit est vaincue et le monde s'eclaire 
Au soleil de la Liberie*! ' 

and, extending her arm, she blesses the people. The 
veiled figure throws off her mourning garments, dashes 
her chains to the ground, and appears as France, 
splendidly attired in red, white and blue ; an immense 
sheaf of wheat rises in the centre of the stage and 
gradually spreads itself out at the base of the altar. 
The crowd, lifting up their arms laden with peaceful 
trophies, as if to offer the Goddess the gifts and whole 
strength of la Patrie, utter a cry of supreme enthu- 
siasm — 

' Gloire a toi, Liberte, soleil de I'univers !' 
and the curtains fall to the last measure of a brilliant 
Jinale. 

As can be judged by the above brief surnmary of 
the scenario. Mademoiselle Holmes's poem is of a very 
complex character — thei'e is a great deal too much 
symbolism in it and not suflicient action ; certain 
episodes, such as the appearance of the veiled figure, 
quite puzzled the audience on the first night, and it 
was not until we read the poem that we could under- 
stand anything about it. The musical score is remark- 
able, but there are too many choruses ; the intermede 
of the lovers' scene and the love chorus is very pretty, 
and was encored ; the motif is elegant, and full of 
melody, — I dare say it will be transposed into a fashion- 
able waltz for the coming winter season. The grand 
finale is very fine, but owing to certain deficiences in 
the choral parts did not produce quite so telling an 
effect as was expected. The fact is that it would have 
taken double the number of voices (800 in all) to 
reach the furthest end of the vast auditorium ; besides, 
the hall of the Palais de 1' Industrie is the last place 
in Paris fit to be turned into a concei't-hall. Notwith- 
standing these slight defects. Mademoiselle Holmes's 
Ode is a work of great talent, and does the greatest 
honour to the lady-composer who so energetically 
braved the innumerable difficulties that lay in her way 
and the petty jealousies which sm-rounded her. For 
the present. Mademoiselle Holmes is resting on her 
laurels, but we shall probably hear this winter at the 
Conservatoire Concerts a new symphony-drama in 




•THE SISTERS.' After GAINSBOROUGH. 



Drawing by A. Roche from 'A Century of Artists.' 



Scottish Art Revieiu, November 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



177 



several parts, entitled Iiiande ! the original idea of 
which is the same which inspired her suite d'orcheslre, 
which bears the same title, but enlarged, and contain- 
ing soli, choruses, and a grand Jiniile. Mademoiselle 
Holmes is one of the most remarkable examples of 
what a woman of talent can accomplish even under 
the greatest difficulties. In England such a woman 
would meet with encouragement and assistance on 
every hand, but in France people are not yet suffi- 
ciently enlightened to understand that talent and 
genius are not the appanage of the male sex alone. 
And this is why Mademoiselle Holmes, whose poetical 
and musical gifts are of a very high order, deserves 
every encouragement. It is hoped that we may have 
the opportunity next season of hearing some of her 
compositions at the London Popular Concerts. 

We are promised quite a series of novelties at the 
Grand Opera this winter ; but promises cost nothing, 
and if we have M. Saint-Saens's Ascanio for our etrennes 
we must be thankful. The great Parisian musical 
event will take place at the Theatre de la Monnaie, 
Brussels. M. Reyer s Sa/ammbo is to be brought out with 
great splendour in the course of two or three months, 
and great things are expected from the composer of 
Sigurd, for never did a poet have a finer subject for a 
librelto. 

On Monday last, October 7th, Jules Dupre, the cele- 



brated landscape-painter, died in the pretty little town 
of L'lle Adam, situated on the banks of the river 
Oise, some twenty miles from Paris. He was born 
there, after his triumphs as an artist he returned 
there, and there he died, at the ripe old age of seventy- 
eight. He came up to Paris in 1S30 to study under 
Diebold, and the following year he made a successful 
debut at the Salon. He visited, one after another, all 
the departments of France, Italy, and spent some time 
in England, after which he returned home and set to 
woi'k in right good earnest. An admirable selection 
of his works is at present on view in the galleries of 
the Centennial Exhibition of French Art at the Grand 
Exhibition ; besides, the Luxembourg Gallery contains 
two of his finest landscapes, Le Matin and Le Soir, 
which were purchased by the State at the celebrated 
San Donato sale in 1871. He was one of the first to 
emancipate French landscape-painting from the tech- 
nical traditions of the old school of paysagistes. It is 
to him, to Rousseau, and Daubigny and Corot that we 
owe the exquisite pleasure afforded by truthful, yet 
slightly idealised, views of land, forest, and river 
scenery. His life was one of labour and contentment, 
and, consequently, of happiness. He was entirely 
devoted to his art ; he lived and painted, and died on 
the banks of his beloved Oise. Peace and honour to 
the memory of a great artist and an honest man ! 

C. Nicholson. 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND.— II. 

HYNDLAND CHURCH. 



OF the three churches, Govan, Barony, and Hynd- 
land, instanced as illustrative of the present 
revival of ecclesiastical architecture in Scotland, the 
two first were described in the September issue of 
The Scottish Art Review. Hyndland Church, with 
which we have now to deal, by Mr. William Leiper, 
of Glasgow, is entirely different from the others in 
general disposition. Instead of low and narrow aisles 
surmounted by a high clerestory, the aisles of Hynd- 
land are nearly of a height with the nave, and are 
roofed independently of it. In consequence, the com- 
position is more spread out, and the general mass lower 
in appearance, so that the effect is artistic but not digni- 
fied. Were the design complete, however, this criti- 
cism would probably not hold true, for the spire, which 
at present does not rise above the level of the porch, 
is calculated, when carried to its full height, to give to 
the building just that feeling of loftiness and import- 
ance which is wanting. The style is again an adapta- 
tion of Early English (its large traceried windows are 
suggestive of Fortrose), but of a later and richer 
type. The walls throughout are of red sandstone, 
and the roofs are covered with red tiles. Seen from 
the north, the main gable, flanked on one side by 

VOL. II, 



a low porch, on the other by the spire that is to 
be, with the aisle gable rising behind it, forms a 
rich and effective group. In the nave gable is placed 
a large four-light traceried window, while the wall 
below, the entrances to the church being from the 
sides, is left perfectly plain save for the cill and base 
courses. The buttresses, which are carried down with- 
out break, are crowned with crockets, and all three 
gables are surmounted with richly designed crosses. 
In the west side, which as it extends along Hyndland 
Road may be considered the principal elevation, the 
most important feature is the aisle, the nave behind it 
being lost to view except where it projects to the north. 
To the south, and at the same height, projects the 
choir, with a transept extending to Hyndland Road, in 
which the aisle terminates. The aisle itself is divided 
into three bays by octagonal buttresses, surmounted 
by a corbelled cornice and parapet, and each bay is 
pierced with a large three-light traceried window of 
simple but beautiful design, the central one differing 
in form from those on either side. North of the aisle, 
in the base of the spire, is placed the principal entrance, 
with a shallow porch for which room is found in the 
projection of the buttresses. The porch arch is carried 

Z 



178 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



on double shafting with foliated capitals, and with the 
inner order cusped ; the outer member of the door 
jamb is composed of a similar shaft, within which the 
simple-moulded doorway is of trefoil form, leaving an 
extended tympanum for carving. In the choir tran- 
sept, which terminates the aisle to the south, is placed 
a traceried window, simpler than those in the aisle, 



wall. Alongside of it, to the east, rises another gable, 
broken by tall stone chimneys ; it is that of the church 
house, containing session and committee rooms, which 
here rises to a height of two stories, lit by a double row 
of mullioned and transomed windows. The roof is a con- 
tinuation of that of the east aisle, unbroken except for 
a small stone gable at right angles to that above men- 







surmounted in the upper part of the gable by a small 
rose window, with the surrounding angles ornamented 
with three circular cinquefoil panels. To the extreme 
south, in the corner between transept and clioir, is a 
small vestry, of which the beautiful little doorway to 
the street, with its deeply-moulded lintel adorned with 
rich bosses, is worthy an extended study. The choir 
gable is very similar in treatment to that of tlie nave, 
with a four-light traceried window surmounting a plain 



tioned. The treatment of this side is very similar to 
that towards Hyndland Road, but plainer, as befits an 
elevation likely to be little seen when the surrounding 
ground is built upon. To this side, moreover, there is 
no choir transept, the organ loft which faces it in the 
interior having space found for it within the house 
buildings. To the noi'th end, and corresponding to the 
entrance under the tower, is placed a small porch 
exceedingly simple in detail but very effective in its 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



179 



simplicity and happy proportions ; its arcli and jambs 
are unraoulded but deeply splayed, and the high gable 
above is enriched with a circular panel. At the 
house, where it projects beyond the aisle, is a similar 
but smaller porch. Altogether we notice in this 
exterior, as compared with those of the other churches 
described, a greater vivacity of expression, rendered 
more possible than in the former instances doubtless 
by more ample funds having been at the disposal of the 



supported upon clustered shafts with richly foliated 
capitals, in design and execution excellent examples 
of Early English carving. Since the aisles rise nearly 
to the same height as the nave there is no clerestory, 
and all the light is derived from the three large 
windows in each aisle and the main bays in nave and 
choir gables. The windows, we can now see, are 
glazed with clear uncoloured glass, except that in the 
choir, which is slightly tinted, the spaces between the 







architect in relation to the extent of accommodation 
required, but characterised nevertheless by a greater 
play of artistic fancy in the variety and originality of 
doors and windows, bosses and finials. Note, for ex- 
ample, the finish of the moulded skews under the 
small niches with which the pedestals of the crosses 
over the gables are ornamented. 

The general arrangement of the interior has already 
been indicated in our survey of the outside. The 
broad nave is flanked by large and open aisles, and 
terminated by an extended choir with transept opening 
from it to the right. The arches between nave and 
aisles are three in number, moulded in two orders, and 



tracery being leaded in floral designs. The roof of 
the nave and aisles are of open timber of simple form; 
that of the choir is also of wood, but vaulted and 
ribbed, and all being but slightly stained and unvar- 
nished, harmonise well with the stone and plaster 
finish of the walls. The whole of the nave gable is 
finished in stone — red, as on the exterior, and the space 
below the great window, left perfectly plain with the 
exception of a very flat and simply splayed arcade, has 
a somewhat bare and unfinished appearance. The 
aisle walls, with the exception of the window dressings, 
are finished in plaster, coloured a warm buff down to 
the moulded cill-course, below which the colour is red. 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 




the whole being well in tone with the stone-work, and 
giving a warm and furnished appearance to the interior. 
The great arch between nave and choir is richly 
moulded, and carried upon triple shafts with bowtell 
moulding between the columns. In the arches within, 
to right and left, the one to the transept, the other to 



the organ, the columns are double, and they, like 
those of the choir arch, have rich foliated capitals. 
The pulpit is a fine piece of design, and, considered as 
such, a work of art complete in itself, worthy of high 
praise ; the great richness of its materials, however, 
combined with its considerable size, throw it somewhat 
out of keeping with its surroundings, simple in form 
and colour. It would be better suited, we feel, to the 
gorgeous vestments of the Romish Church, than to the 
simple black gown of the minister presently officiating, 
who must exert all his eloquence to avoid being ex- 
tinguished by the richness of his setting. The base 
and steps, as also the tracery in the upper part, are of 
white stone, the shafts of red mottled marble, with 
panels of green serpentine and alabaster. The com- 
munion table is also of alabaster and marble, as is the 
font, the latter a beautiful design with four well-carved 
angel figures beai'ing scrolls round the basin. The 
organ-screen, with its canopy overhanging the key- 
board, the choir-stalls and reading-desk, are simple but 
full of character, and thoroughly in keeping with the 
church in all but the colour, for time has been left to 
stain the oak and has not 3'et had opportunity to carry 
out the work. Withal it is a beautiful church, well suited 
to the requirements of to-day as a place for preaching 
and listening, and, as regards architecture, the work 
of a man with extended knowledge of, and thorough 
sympathy with, the style in which he is working. 

Only brief reference has been possible to the most 
interesting features of three churches, the limits placed 
upon these articles making it impossible to refer to 
others worthy of note. Those selficted are not isolated 
examples, and attention might equally have been 
directed with profit to some of the churches of the late 
Mr. Sellars, of Mr. Blanc of Edinburgh, and others, 
besides further examples of the architects whose work 
we have been examining. 




IBSEN'S EARLY LIFE 



181 



IBSEN'S EARLY LIFE. 



THE origins of a creative artist, and the histoi'v of 
his development, are always interesting : they 
are instructive alike to the student of literature and 
to the scientific student who is concerned with human 
variations and their causes. In the case of very few 
of the world's great artists are we able to trace their 
jjrimitive evolution save in the faintest way, and Ibsen 
is scarcely an exception to this general rule. Henrik 
Jaeger, a literary man well known in the North, has, 
however, recently published a volume entitled Henrik 
Ibsen, 1S28-1888, which is an elaborate study of the 
Norwegian dramatist's artistic development ; it is dis- 
tinctly the best of the numerous books on the subject 
published in Germany, Denmark, and Sweden, and it 
deserves to be translated into English as it has already, 
I believe, been translated into German. Mr. Jaeger 
enables us for the first time to gain a fairly clear 
insight into the nature of the influences which have 
moulded the dramatist. As the book seems yet to 
have attracted no attention in England, it may be 
worth while, with its assistance, to present to English 
readers, who are now learning to know the literary 
work of this strange and powerful artist, some slight 
account of his early life. 

To George Brandes, and to many subsequent critics, 
Ibsen has appeared as in a peculiar sense the embodi- 
ment of the Norwegian genius. One is startled at the 
threshold of his history by the discovery that, unlike 
Bjornson and Kielland and Lie, Ibsen has the very 
faintest claim to be considered a Norwegian at all. 

About 1720 a Danish skipper, one Peter Ibsen, 
came over from Moen i to Bergen and settled there. 
He married the daughter of a German who had like- 
wise emigrated from his own country ; these were the 
poet's great-great-grandparents. Peter Ibsen had a 
son, Henrik Petersen Ibsen, who was also a ship's 
captain. He married a lady whose name is given as 
Wenche Dischington, the daughter of a Scotchman 
naturalised in Norway. This Henrik Ibsen settled in 
Skien, and had a son of the same name who married a 
German wife. All these Ibsens were sailors. Henrik 
Ibsen's son, Knud Ibsen, the dramatist's father, like 
his father married a wife of German extraction, Maria 
Cornelia Altenburg, the daughter of a merchant who 
had begun life as a sailor. 

This ancestry is very significant. It will be seen 
that Ibsen is on both sides predominantly German, 
and that in his German and Danish blood there is an 
interesting Scotch strain. The tendency to philo- 
sophic abstraction and the strenuous earnestness, 
mingling with the more characteristically northern 

^ This island, I may note in passing, is the home of a black- 
haired race very unlike the typical Norsemen, and which has been 
identified with those ' black strangers ' spoken of by the Irish 
chroniclers who described the Viking invasions. 



imaginative influences, are explained by this German 
and Scotch ancestry; it explains also the peculiarly 
isolated and yet cosmopolitan attitude which marks 
Ibsen, why it is that his works have been so enthusi- 
astically received, and so easily naturalised in Germany, 
and why, when they once began to be known, they 
have made so deep an iiupression in our own land. 

Ibsen's mother possessed a shy, silent, and solitary 
nature which she imparted to her son. One of her 
daughters thus describes her: 'She was a quiet, 
lovable woman, the soul of the house, devoted to 
her husband and children. She was always sacrificing 
herself. There was no bitterness or reproach in her.' 
The father was of cheerful disposition, a man of 
sociable tastes, popular in his circle, but also feared, 
for he had a keen wit, and like his son he could use 
it unmercifully. 

Knud Ibsen's eldest son, Henrik, was born at Skien, 
a busy little town of 3000 inhabitants occupied in the 
timber trade, on the 20th March 1828. ' I was born,' 
the dramatist writes, in some reminiscences published 
by Mr. Jaeger for the first time, ' in a house in the 
market-place, Stockmann's House it was then called. 
The house lay right opposite the church, with its high 
steps and considerable tower. To the right, in i'ront 
of the church, stood the town pillory, and to the left 
the town-hall, the lock-up, and the mad-house. The 
fourth side of the market-place was occupied by the 
Latin school and the town school. The church lay 
free in the middle. This prospect was the first view 
of the earth that presented itself to my eyes. All build- 
ings — no green, no rural open landscape.' It was in 
the church tower that the baby Henrik received his 
first conscious and deep impression. The nursemaid 
took him up and held him out (to the horror of his 
mother below), and he never forgot that new and 
strange vision of the world from above. Ibsen goes 
on to describe the attractions which were held for 
him in the gloomy town-hall, and the pillory (unused 
for many years), a red-brown post of about a man's 
height, with a great round knob which had originally 
been painted black, but which then looked like a 
human face. In front of the post hung an iron chain, 
and in that an iron ring which seemed like two small 
arms ready to clasp the child's neck on the least pro- 
vocation. And then there was the town-hall. That, 
too, had high steps like the church, and underneath it 
was the gaol with its barred windows. ' Inside the 
bars I have seen many pale and dark faces.' And then 
there was the ' mad-house,' which in its time had really 
been used to confine lunatics. That also was barred, 
btit inside the bars the little window was filled by a 
massive iron plate with small round holes like a sieve. 
This place was said to have been the abode of a famous 
criminal who had been branded. 



182 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



These early impressions of the dramatist — the 
church tower, the pillory, the barred windows, the 
pale criminals — are of no little interest. They help to 
explain for us the sombre and tragic cast, purely human 
and reflective, of Ibsen's character. They explain 
too the absence in his work of the sea and the forest, 
of those things which give such a sweet, wild aroma 
now and again to the work of Bjornson and Lie. The 
little town with its active commercial life and its 
equally active religious life — for Skien was a centre of 
pietistic influence, was such a place as is brought 
before us in De Unges Forbund, and in Samfundeh 
St'iUer, and it was a fit birthplace for the author of 
Brand. 

Knud Ibsen belonged to the aristocracy of Skien, 
and his house was a centre of its social life. When 
Henrik was eight years old there was an end of this, 
for his father became a bankrupt. After the cata- 
strophe the family retired to a small and humble home 
outside Skien, where they lived with a frugality which 
was in marked contrast with their former life. There 
can be no doubt that this sudden change of circum- 
stances, and the insight which it brought into the 
social cleavage of a provincial town, counted for much 
in Ibsen's development. It is certain that at this 
period his marked individuality began to be perceived. 
He did not play like the other children ; while they 
romped in the yard he retired into a little enclosure in 
an alley that led to the kitchen, and barricaded him- 
self against the heedless incursions of the younger 
members of the family. Here he kept guard not only 
in summer but in the depth of winter. It is clear that 
even at this early age Ibsen had reached the point of 
proud isolation and defiance of his fellow-citizens 
which Stockmann ultimately attained. One of his 
sistei's describes how they used to throw stones and 
snowballs at his retreat to make him come out and 
join their play, but when he could no longer withstand 
the attack, and yielded to the assailants, he could dis- 
play no skill in any kind of sport, and soon retired 
again to his den. Reading appears to have been one 
of his chief occupations then, and Jaeger assures us 
that the words which many years afterwards Ibsen put 
into the mouth of the little girl Helwig, who is so 
pathetic and tender a figure in one of his latest dramas, 
Vildendeii, contain a reminiscence of childhood. ' And 
do you read the books ? ' asked Gregers. ' Oh yes, 
when I can. But most of them are PJnglish, and I 
can't read those. But then I can look at the pictures. 
There is one big black book called Harnjson's Hision/ 
of London ; it must be a hundred years old, that has 
such a number of pictures in it. First there is a pic- 
ture of Death, with an hour-glass and a girl. I think 
that is hideous. But then there are all sorts of other 
pictures, with churches and castles and streets, and 
great ships that sail on the sea.' He also amused him- 
self with pencil and colour-box. Meanwhile he went 
to school, going through the usual course of learning a 
little Latin ; he appears to have taken a special interest 



in the Biblical instruction. At fourteen he was con- 
firmed, and the time came for him to make his way in 
the world. 

At this period he wished to become a painter ; he 
devoted himself with zeal to drawing and an interest 
in painting has remained with him, the formation of 
an excellent little collection of Renaissance pictures 
becoming in later life one of his chief hobbies. In the 
existing state of the family means this career was out 
of the question, and he was sent to an apothecary at 
Grimstad, a little town containing at that time not 
more than 800 inhabitants. The apothecary's shop, 
Jaeger remarks, is the place where all the loungers 
meet in the evening to discuss the events of the day, 
and doubtless the apothecary's shop was an element in 
the education of the future dramatist. In his interest- 
ing preface to the second edition of Caiilina he has 
himself described the five years of development that 
he went through in this little town. He did not wish 
to become a chemist ; he would become a student and 
study medicine. At the same time his poetical activity 
and the eventful year of 1848 came to arouse in the 
solitary silent boy a healthy interest in the outside 
world. It was at Grimstad that he wrote his first play, 
Caiilina, and into it he threw his youthful revolutionary 
fervour. He also wrote poems at this period, chiefly 
elegiac, which are often of that serious, even sombre, 
character which, as he has himself recognised, dates 
from his boyhood. 

He was not a communicative youth ; occasionally 
his real self broke forth, but usually he was more 
inclined to think than to express his thoughts. A 
lady who then lived at Grimstad described him as 
going about like an enigma sealed with seven seals. 
He appears to have produced a serious, stern, almost 
gloomy impression on the people who came across him. 

In 1850 he went up to Christiania to the University, 
and from this period the events of his life are better 
known. His revolutionary ardour found outlet in 
writing for a newspaper, and he also wrote a new play 
(not included among his works), a little drama in one 
act called Kjaimpelwjen, which dealt with the Viking 
period, somewhat in the manner of Oehlenschlager. 
It was performed at the Christiania Theatre, and was 
favourably received, outlasting three performances, 
then accounted a very respectable run. Ibsen was 
encouraged to throw up his university studies and to 
become a literary man. He could not, however, live 
very long on the proceeds of Kjcentpehojen, and the 
young dramatist had to exercise some economy. He 
lived in common with a faithful young friend, Schulerud, 
who had published Caiilina for him, and Botten Hansen, 
who knew him at this time, says that the friends lived 
on bread and cofl^ee, for the sake of appearances leaving 
their lodgings at dinnei-time, as though they had gone 
out to dine abroad, and returning after a decent interval. 
But they were so full of life and cheerfulness that no 
one suspected the secrets of their doiuestic economy. 

Gradually Ibsen's activities, as dramatist, lyric poet, 



A GROUP OF PICTURESQUE SCOTCH PURITANS 



183 



political satirist, and journalist, attracted attention, and 
his connection with the new Bergen Theatre began 
with provision for three months' foreign travel : this 
he spent chieHy in Germany. Then his apprenticeship 
to art began in earnest, and he was enabled to study 
practically, and to some extent to absorb, the dramatic 
skill of Shakespeare, Holberg.Oehlenschlager, Heiberg, 
Scribe, and many other playwrights. A very strong 
national tendency ruled at this time in Bergen, and 
its influence was seen in Ibsen's next play. Sanct- 
hansnetieii, produced in 1853 and never yet pi-inted, 
seems to have some points of resemblance to the 
Midsummer Night's Dream ; it was not very successful. 



Two years later followed a play of very ditferent 
character, strong in workmanship, Frii Injit HI Oslrdt. 
It was followed by a decided success, Gi/det fra 
Sdlhaiig, the result of a study of Saga-literature, and by 
Olaf Li/Jekraiis. a romantic play of rather similar 
character, but less successful ; it is not included among 
its author's published works. 

Olqf Liljekrans was the last of Ibsen's youthful and 
tentative works. He was now thirty years of age, and 
on the point of leaving Bergen for Christiania, where 
he would shortly produce Hwrmendere J'ra Helge/and. 
His apprenticeship was ended. - Henceforth he was 
among the great masters. Havelock Ellis. 



A GROUP OF PICTURESQUE SCOTCH PURITANS. 



THE attachment of the Old Seceders, ' The Auld 
Lichts,' to thfir own creed, polity, and clergy 
was self-denying to ixcess. They were true devotees, 
sacrificing to their faith comfort, and even life, as most 
men would count them. Religion with them was no 
mere conventionality, to be donned and doffed with 
their Sunday coat, but it was their daily dress. It was 
more, it was the leaven that leavened the whole lump 
of their life, if it ever did so to any people. 

The extraordinary — nay, vital importance attached 
by them to sacred things as compared with secular is 
strikingly illustrated by one of them, who afterwards 
became eminent, the good, godly, and learned John 
Brown of Haddington, the commentator. From his 
youth he was a staunch Seceder; in his manhood, 
before entering the pulpit, he was for a time a pedlar 
in Fife. So strict was he in his religious zeal, that, 
during his peregrinations with his pack on his back, he 
would enter, for the sale of his wares, only those houses 
in which he was assured from inquiry or experience 
that the inmates were sincerely pious ! His success as 
a merchant declined, of course, before such a severe 
religious test, but without broadening in the least his 
rigid practice, though forcing him to abandon the pack 
for the dominie's desk. 

Jonathan Angus, who dwelt on a farm near Winch- 
burgh, an uncommon example of a humorous elder, 
was one of many in that part of the country who 
then lived the stern but exemplary life of Scotch 
puritanism. His brother David was almost as great 
an original, certainly as strong a Seceder as himself 
They used to walk weeklv into Edinburgh, some dozen 
miles each way, a longer distance than most folks 
would care to go for the sake of a sermon, especially 
a high and diy Calvinistic sermon ; for this was to them 
as the marrow and fatness of the Psalmist. 

One of Jonathan's sons, who bore his name and 
nature, even surpassed him in his weekly self-denying 
habits when going to the same church. A millwright 
like his father, young Jonathan settled at the old 
castle of Rosyth, on the Firth of Forth, between North 



Queensferry and Limekilns. To reach Edinburgh he 
and his family had to cross the Firth, there at least 
a mile broad, to the fishing-station near Hopetoun, 
and then take the long road of some twelve miles to 
the little meeting-house, near the Infirmary, where he 
loved to worship. This he did every Sabbath, even in 
winter, and sometimes in a gale on the Firth, which 
few ordinary folks, and even few sailors, would have 
cared to face. In the dark he hung lanterns at stem 
and stern of the open boat he used, to shed light on 
the voyage and signal his approach to his waiting and 
often anxious household. And the old lady who told 
me the tale, then a young girl who used to sew at the 
fishery, herself an Auld Licht, used to view the strik- 
ing scene with wondering respect, and a silent deter- 
mination, which has not yet left her, to grudge or 
grumble at nothing 'in the service of the Lord.' 

The farmer of Duntarvie, near Winchburgh, whose 
house was not far from Jonathan's, walked also to 
Edinburgh to chapel. Near neighbours of his, Joseph 
Morris and his wife, who lived first at Auldcathie and 
afterwards at Woodend, tramped a like distance to 
hear a popular preacher, Robert Renwick, in Dean 
Street Secession Church, Stockbridge ; and they did this 
for years. 

Morris's father, a fine but inflexible Seceder, who 
lived at Craigie, near Dalmeny, used regularly to walk 
into town to chui-ch, only a few miles shorter, though 
he was nigh seventy years of age. He attended, for 
the greater part of a long lifetime, all the Seceder 
sacraments in the country round, getting up at two on 
Sabbath mornings, making his simple brose, setting 
out all alone in the dark, and travelling often twenty 
or thirty miles — thinking nothing of the long journeys 
except that they were a pleasure and a privilege to 
himself, and a duty to God. 

A friend of theirs in Edinburgh, William Meikle, 
was an uncommonly intelligent man, and as enthusi- 
astic a Seceder. He wore a long beard, 'white as the 
driven snow,' as my informant described it, a veiy un- 
common appendage then, especially for the Auld Lichts, 



184 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



which made his fellows remark him, and which gave 
him a striking patriarchal appearance. He was a great 
reader and thinker, and was known as the ' traveller/ 
on account of a walking feat of religious fervour he 
l)erformed. He was a great devourer of theological 
literature, and, among others, of the works of the once 
famous Thomas Boston, author of the Fourj'old Stole and 
the Crook in Ike Lot, once as conmion in Scotch houses 
as the Pilgrim's Progress: He so admired Boston that 
he walked all the way to Duns and far-oif Ettrick 
Dale, and back again, simply to see his birthplace and 
church ; and he bore from them some grass, reverently 
treasured by 
him, like a 

piece of the - - 

true cross by a 
palmer. 

All Seceders 
in those early 
days of dissent, 
especially the 
' Auld Lichts,' 
were generally 
looked down on 
by the proud 
Establishment 
folks, who nick- 
named them 
' Whigs,' not so 
many years 
ago ; the old 
Ayrshire name, 
originating in 
' whey,' being 
thought a])i)ro- 
priate for their 
sour looks 
and unsmiling 
rigidity. 'I'heir 

children used to be mocked by their school-fellows, 
and an old friend of mine had to fight many a battle 
in the playground to defend himself and his brothers 
from the contemptuous assaults of these young theo- 
logians. The Seceders were often forced, by the 
refusal of sites for their chapels, to woiship in the 
open air. These exjieriences they joyfully endured 
for conscience' sake, and they reminded them also of 
their Covenanting forefathers, their great exemplars, 
who met in the moors and mosses undeterred by bullet 
and gallows, whose doctrines they deemed it sin and 
cowardice to change, and whose grand ' Covenant ' 
they more than once formallj' re-adopted. 

In spite of their severe style and opinions, they 
were noted for a curious and sometimes grim humour, 
in both sermon and speech. They generally used 
plain Scotch at home and often in the pulpit, and 
always with piquancy and power. The)' dealt in quaint 
comparisons, startling contrasts, and extraordinary 
directness of thought and expression ; like Boston's 




famous appeal to the profligate sinner, to beware lest 
he should 'leap out of Delilah's lap into Abraham's 
bosom ' I 

The Seceder Browns were then the great lights, 
' the stoops,' of the Secession Kirk, revered for their 
piety and ability, and none the less that they inhei-ited 
the blood of the old commentator of Haddington — a 
remarkable race, that flowered out into our genial 
' Rab.' John Brown's son, of the same name, preached 
in the meeting-house at Longridge, near Whitburn, six 
miles south of Bathgate, from 1777 till 1832, dying 
in his seventy-eighth year, after more than half a 

century's ser- 
vice. He was 
- - .. more than re- 

• , spected — he 

was revered by 
the folks, al- 
though they 
did affection- 
ately call him 
' Johnny Broon 
o' Langrig.' 

He was an 
able man and 
voluminous 
author, like his 
father, and long 
acted as Profes- 
sor of Divinity 
for their body 
to students who 
came there to 
sit under him. 
Thoug'h exceed- 
ingly homely in 
manner and 
speech,he bated 
nothing of his 
ministerial dignity, and his sayings used to be quoted 
all round the country. One Sabbath, in condemning an 
over-profession of religion as generally empty, and 
hateful to both God and man, he continued : ' I dinna 
like thae lang-leggit lampin' capons ; and I refer tae 
my wife i' the waster laft there if the laich-leggit hens 
arena the best layers ! ' 

He was specially pungent — nay, fierce — against arro- 
gant transgressors, and no less against gabbling gossips, 
shutting their mouths by many a parting shot, on the 
highway and in the street, that went straight home 
and closed discussion. In order the better to visit his 
scattered flock, he rode on a well-known pony, which 
had a stivinge fashion of whisking its tail about as it 
trotted under the good man. He was disproportionately 
large and tall for his steed, which, however, seemed 
pleased to carry him. A chattering old woman accosted 
him one day as he rode through the weaving village of 
Whitburn, bj- exclaiming from the centre of a group of 
wives, ' Heh ! Mr. Broon, what 's the mater wi' your 



A GROUP OF PICTURESQUE SCOTCH PURITANS 



185 



pownie's tail ?' 'The same ailment, my wumman, as 
yeer lang tongue has,' at once retorted he, stopping 
his horse in front of them, the better to deliver his 
volley ; ' it wags 'cause he canna help it ! ' And 
off he set amid the laughter of the neighbours, 
who relished the discomfiture of their friend not less 
than the humour of their minister, while the pony 
whisked his tail in demonstration of his master's wit. 

The reading of a sermon from paper was, in the eyes 
of the elect, the abomination of spiritual desolation, 
and lost many a poor preacher both kirk and character, 
though strangely their idol, Boston, wrote out his dis- 
courses, and thus laid the foundation of his published 
works. Many are the stories told of the luckless dis- 
covery of hidden leaves blown by an unexpected blast 
from the guilty pulpit, or otherwise exposed to the 
keen eyes of the critical censors of the pews. Such was 
the speech of the sharp-tongued old woman, when the 
minister, suddenly pausing and searching in vain for 
his friendly paper, kept repeating, 'Thirdly, my breth- 
ren, thirdly ' : ' I doot, sir, yeer thirdly 's oot at the 
winnock ! ' 



Dr. John Ritchie, of Potterrow, Edinburgh, was one 
of their orators. On one occasion, when holding forth 
on faith requiring deeds as its evidence, he said : ' Faith 
without works is like brose without knots I ' — a descrip- 
tion that became popular. Among old Scotch folks, 
especially ploughmen, brose was counted no brose at 
all unless it had ' knots ' in it — that is, lumps of dry 
oatmeal, which, they considered, impi-oved its taste 
and made it worth the eating, as it stayed longer on 
hungry stomachs. 

When Mr. Jack, then of Linlithgow, performed a 
marriage ceremony, he used to finish his long interro- 
gation, admonition, and prayer in presence of the 
waiting and anxious pair by remarking, ' Noo, a man '11 
ne'er dae weel onless his wife '11 lat 'm ! ' — at once wise 
words and a warning. 

Isn't it a pity that the homely Scotch point, 
piquancy, and practicalness of these Old Seceders ai-e 
now so sadly things of the past in both pulpit and 
life !■ 

WiLLi.'VM Jolly. 




VOL. I]. 



186 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



HERMAN MELVILLE. 



' "pNSTEAD of a landsman's grey-goose quill^ he 
J_ seems to liave plucked a quill from a skimming 
curie Wj or to have snatched it, a fearful joy, from a 
hovering albatross, if not from the wings of the -wind 
itself.' 

This extract, from the pages of a bygone review, is a 
sample of the outburst of interest and admiration 
which greeted the appearance of Herman Melville's 
earlier volumes more than forty years ago. Such books 
as Typee, Omoo, and Mardi challenged attention by 
the originality of their style, their suggestive piquancy 
of tone, the strangeness of the experiences of which 
they purported to be the record, and not least by the 
very grotesqueness of the titles themselves. Who and 
what was tlie narrator of these mysterious adventures 
among the islands of the Pacific ? Was he, as his stories 
implied, a common seaman serving before the mast — 
now on a whaler, now on an American frigate, and 
devoting the interim of his voyages to the publication 
of his diary ; or was he rather, as might be surmised 
from the cultured tone of his writings and the fictitious 
aspect of some of his ' narratives,' a man of liberal 
education and imaginative temperament, who promul- 
gated these romantic accounts of perils in the South 
Seas from some comfortable quarters in London or 
New York } The critics, intent on such questions as 
these, were fairly puzzled as to Herman Melville's 
identity ; even his name was declared by some to be 
a num de plume, ' Separately,' said one wiseacre, ' the 
names are not uncommon ; we can urge no valid reason 
against their juncture ; yet, in this instance, they fall 
suspiciously on our ear.' 

Herman Melville, once the cause of this lively com- 
motion in the dovecots of criticism, but now so far 
forgotten by a later and ungrateful generation as to 
be too often confused with Herman Merivale on the 
one side, or Whyte Melville on the other, was born at 
New York, August 1st, ISI9. His father, Allan Mel- 
ville, who came of an old Scotch family, was a well-to- 
do merchant, w ho had read much and travelled widely. 
' Of winter evenings,' says his son, ' by the well- 
remembered sea-coal fires in old Greenwich Street, 
New York, he used to tell my brother and me of the 
monstrous waves at sea, mountain-high, and of the 
masts bending like twigs.' These anecdotes, together 
perhaps with the influence of an uncle, ' an old white- 
haired sea-captain,' seem to have been instrumental 
in fostering the boy's roving disposition and natural 
inclination to the sea; he indulged in long childish 
reveries about distant voyages ; used to pore by the 
hour over old books and sea-pictures, especially over a 
miniature glass ship which formed one of the orna- 
ments in his father's house ; and on one occasion, as 
he tells us, he gazed with absolute reverence on a man 
pointed out to him as having once been in Stony 



Arabia. While he was still quite young his father 
became bankrupt and died, and his mother removed 
fi-om New York to a village on the Hudson river — a 
change of fortune which left a painful and lasting 
impression on the boy's mind. ' It is a hard and cruel 
thing,' he wrote many years later, ' thus in early youth 
to taste beforehand the pangs which should be reserved 
for the stout time of manhood.' At the age of eighteen 
he shipped as a common sailor on a merchantman bound 
to Liverpool, of which voyage he has given an account 
in Redburn, an apparently authentic record of the experi- 
ences of a poor, proud, simple minded youth, who, 
embittered by poverty, goes to sea ' with a devil in his 
heart,' and is gradually initiated into the hardships and 
hoiTors of nautical life. 

But in spite of these early disappointments, Hennan 
Melville's roving propensities remained as strong as 
ever, and to go to sea occasionally as a common sailor 
became for him a fixed habit, ' a way of driving off the 
spleen and regulating the circulation.' ' As for me,' 
he wrote in 1851, 'I am tormented with an everlasting 
itch for things remote ; I love to sail forbidden seas 
and land on barbarous coasts.' And elsewhere : ' Oh, 
give me again the rover's life — the joy, the thrill, the 
whirl ! Let me feel thee again, old sea ! Let me leap 
into thy saddle once more ! I am sick of these lerni 
Jirma toils and cares, sick of the dust and reek of 
towns. Let me snuff thee up, sea-breeze, and whinny 
in thy spray ! ' In 1841 he embarked for liis second 
voyage, this time on a whaling vessel bound for the 
Pacific ; but becoming weary of the monotony of this 
occupation, he deserted from the ship in the harbour of 
Nukahiva, one of the Marquesas Islands, and spent 
four months in a sort of honourable captivity among 
the warlike tribe of -the Typees. Escaping at last on 
an Australian whaler, he voyaged to Tahiti, roamed 
about for some time on adjacent islands, and finally 
worked his way home to Boston on an American 
frigate, after an absence of three years — a series of 
adventures whicli afterwards provided material for 
three narrative volumes, Typce, Omoo, and White Jackcl, 
and presumably also suggested at least the outline of 
some of his more imaginative productions. In 1847 
he married, and in 1850 took up his residence at Pitts- 
field, Massachusetts, whence he returned a few years 
later to New York, and was given a post at the Custom 
House. His love of travel, however, had not forsaken 
him, for he is said to have embarked in I860 for a tour 
round the world. At the present time he is still living, 
an old m.an of seventy j'eai's. 

His books may be roughly divided into two classes, 
according to the predominance of the practical or the 
fantastic element. Typee, the 'narrative of a four 
months' residence in the Marquesas Islands,' appeared 
in 1846, and takes precedence of all his other writings. 



HERMAN MELVILLE 



187 



ill merit no less than in date. Few indeed are the 
books of adventure that can vie with this charming 
httle volume in freshness, humour, and literary grace, 
above all in the extraordinary interest which the story, 
simple as it is, inspires in the mind of the reader, from 
the first page to the last. The rhythmical drifting of 
the whaler 'Dolly' before the equable trade-winds of 
the Pacific ; the arrival in the dream-like harbour of 
Nukahiva ; the escape of the two malcontents Tom 
and Toby ; their wanderings on the mountains, and 
descent into the dreaded valley of the redoubtable 
Typees ; their hospitable reception by the natives ; the 
departure of Toby and long retention of 'Tommo'; 
the wild beauty of the valley, with its flashing streams 
and rich groves of bread-fruit trees and cocoa-nuts ; 
the mild, placid, healthful life of the inhabitants, 
varied by an occasional indulgence in a cannibal 
banquet, — all this is depicted with the firmness of out- 
line indicative of a true narrative, yet invested (such 
is the literary skill of the narrator) with the filmy 
mystery of a fairy tale. The characters of those parti- 
cular islanders among whom 'Tommo's' lot was cast 
are drawn with wonderful clearness ; the warrior-chief 
Mehevi, the aged Marheyo, the housewife Tinor, the 
faithful but officious Kory-Kory, and above all the 
gentle and beautiful Fayaway — surely one of the most 
charming maidens ever sketched by poet or novelist 
— stand before us to the life. There is much valuable 
information in the book about various native customs, 
such as the mysterious edict of the ' taboo,' the process 
of tatooing, the manufacture of the white 'tappa' cloth, 
the polyandrous marriage system, and certain super- 
stitious creeds and ceremonials. The remarks also on 
the comparative happiness of civilised and uncivilised 
nations are extremely interesting and suggestive. 
' Civilisation,' says Melville, ' does not engross all the 
virtues of humanity ; she has not even her full share 
of them. ... I will frankly declare that after passing 
a few weeks in this valley of the Marquesas, I formed 
a higher estimate of human nature than I had ever 
before entertained.' On the whole, in spite of the 
complaint of some of Melville's critics that they would 
have been better satisfied ' had the annotations of time 
been more distinctly marked,' there seems no reason 
to doubt the author's assertion that his account of 
Typee and its inhabitants was ' the unvarnished truth ' ; 
indeed, explicit testimony has been borne to this effect 
by a later traveller.^ 

Onioo {i.e., in Polynesian dialect, 'a rover') was 
published a year later than Typee, to which it supplies 
the sequel. It is altogether a more desultory and 
discursive book than its predecessor ; but there is 
much vigour in the narrator's description of his voyage 
from Typee to Tahiti on board the ' Little Jule,' and his 

' Los Gringos, a volume of travels published in 1849 by Lieut. 
Wise, of the U.S. Navy. But we decline to believe that the 
Fayaway seen by Lieut. Wise at Nukahiva, who was acting as 
niaid-of-all-work to a French officer, was identical with the 
romantic nymph of Melville's narrative. 



subsequent adventures in the Society Islands. Some 
remarks in which he commented severely on the errors 
committed by Christian missionaries in their treatment 
of the native Polynesians gave great offence to the 
critics, who attempted to discount the effect by im- 
peaching the character of the sailor-novelist, especially 
on the subject of his relations with the charming 
Fayaway. ' We shall not pollute our pages,' wrote 
one grandiloquent reviewer, ' by transferring to them 
the scenes in which this wretched profligate appears 
self-portrayed as the chief actor.' But, as a matter of 
fact, these scenes are drawn with the most admirable 
tenderness of feeling and delicacy of touch, and contain 
nothing whatever of which their author had cause to 
be ashamed. 

Redbuni (ISig) and While Jacket (1850) complete 
the category of Melville's distinctly autobiographical 
writings. The former has already been mentioned as 
giving an account of his first voyage ; the latter em- 
bodies the experiences which he gained during his 
year's service on the American man-of-war with which 
he returned from a Pacific harbour to Boston, after the 
events narrated in Omoo. This vessel, which he calls the 
' Neversink,' is said to have been in reality the ' United 
States,' which in 1812 captured the English frigate 
' Macedonian.' fVhite Jacket is a careful study of all the 
doings on board a man-of-war, its sum and substance 
being a strong protest, on humane grounds, against the 
overbearing tyranny of the naval officers and the 
depravity of the crew. ' So long as a man-of-war 
exists,' he §ays, 'it must ever remain a picture of much 
that is tyrannical and repelling in human nature.' 
The serious tone of the book is, however, relieved and 
diversified by some brilliant touches of humorous de- 
scription, among which may be mentioned the account 
of the white jacket (whence the title), an extempore 
surtout manufactured for himself by the narrator, in 
default of the ordinary seaman's costume, out of a white 
duck frock, stuffed for the sake of warmth with old 
socks and trouser-legs. A coating of paint to make it 
waterproof was the crowning desideratum ; but owing 
to the scarcity of the commodity in question this was 
denied him. ' Said old Brush, the captain of the paint- 
room, " Look ye. White Jacket," said he, '' ye can't 
have any paint." ' The ill-fated garment accordingly 
acted as a sort of sponge, a ' universal absorber,' so 
that White Jacket's heartless shipmates would dry 
themselves at his expense by standing up against him 
in damp weather. ' I dripped,' he says, ' like a turkey 
a-roasting ; and long after the rainstorms were over, 
and the sun showed his face, I still stalked a Scotch 
mist, and when it was fair weather with others, alasJ 
it was foul weather with me.' He is at length rid of 
his encumbrance by nothing less than a faU from the 
masthead, in which he entirely loses his white jacket, 
and nearly loses his life. 

Melville's laterwoi-ks must be considered as phantasies 
rather than a relation of sober facts. He was affected, 
like so many of his countrymen, by the transcendental 



188 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



tendency of the age, and the result in his case was a 
strange blending of the practical and the metaphysical, 
his stories of what purported to be plain matter-of-fact 
life being gradually absorbed and swallowed up in the 
wildest mystical speculations. This process was already 
discernible in Maidi, published as early as 1849, the 
first volume of which is worthy to rank with the very 
finest achievements of its author, while the rest had far 
better have remained altogether unwritten. The story 
of Mardi is apparently an imaginary valuation of that 
told in Tijpee, for here too the narrator deserts from a 
whaling-vessel in the Pacific, and makes his way in the 
boat ' Chamois,' together with old Jarl, a fellow-mariner, 
to an island of ideal felicity, where he is entertained 
by a chieftain. Media, who bears considerable re- 
semblance to the royal Mehevi of Ti/pee. The ' watery 
world ' of the Pacific, with its blazing tropical sun by 
day and magical phosphorescence by night, as seen 
from the solitary whale-boat, is described in Melville's 
most graphic and suggestive manner, the chapter on 
sharks, in particular, being a masterpiece of fact melt- 
ing into phantasy. The Pacific, he tells us, is ' popu- 
lous as China. Trust me, there are more sharks in 
the sea than mortals on land ; ' and he proceeds to 
expatiate on the various species of the sea-monster — 
the brown shark, ' a grasping, rapacious varlet, that in 
spite of the hard knocks received from it often 
snapped viciously at our steering-oar ' ; the dandy 
blue shark, ' a dainty spark,' like a Bond Street beau, 
that ' lounged by with a careless fin and an indolent 
tail'; the tiger shark, 'a round, portly gourmand, 
with distended mouth and collapsed conscience ' ; and 
the ghastly white shark, a ' ghost of a fish,' for ever 
gliding solitary just below the surface. But the great 
charm of the book centres round Yillah, the mysteri- 
ous white maiden — a sort of spiritualised Fayaway — 
whom the hero rescues from being sacrificed to the 
pagan deities, and takes ^^\i\\ him to the island of 
Mardi, only to lose her there through some mystic 
supernatural agency. At this point an extraordinary 
change comes over the whole tone of Mardi, the 
remainder of which is devoted to the search for Yillah, 
who is apparently typical of ideal love, and the rejec- 
tion of the allurements of Hantia, the goddess of 
earthly passion — all of which, with much more, is 
narrated with an excess of fantastic conception and 
gorgeous word-painting that is positively bewildering. 
A writer in the Revue des deux Mondes has described 
Mardi as ' the dream of a badly-educated midshipman, 
drunk on hasheesh, and swinging asleep at the mast- 
head of a ship in a warm tropical night.' As applied 
to the latter portion of the book, this criticism is 
scarcely exaggerated ; never did a story which began 
with such promise end in such disappointment. 

Mob!/ Dick; or, The White Whale (1851) is perhaps 
more successful as a M'hole than Mardi, since its very 
extravagances, great as they are, work in more har- 
moniously with the outline of the plot. Ishmael, the 
narrator, having embarked on board a whaling-vessel 



with a savage harpooner named Queequeg, whose 
character is admirably drawn, gradually discovers 
that they are committed to an extraordinary voyage of 
vengeance. It seems that, in a former expedition. 
Captain Ahab, their commander, a mysterious person- 
age, who ' looked like a man cut away from the stake 
when the fire has overrunningly wasted all the limbs 
without consuming them,' had lost one of his legs, 
which had been ' reaped away ' by Moby Dick, a 
famous white sperm-whale of unequalled strength and 
malignity. Frenzied by his loss, he was now devoting 
the rest of his life to the single object of destroying- 
Moby Dick, who ' swam before him as the monomaniac 
incarnation of all those malicious agencies which some 
deep men feel eating in them.' The book is a curious 
compound of real information about whales in general 
and fantastic references to this sperm-whale in particu- 
lar, that ' portentous and mysterious monster,' which 
is studied (as the bird is studied by Michelet) in a 
metaphysical and ideal aspect — ' a mass of tremendous 
life, all obedient to one volition, as the smallest insect.' 
Wild as the story is, there is a certain dramatic vigour 
in the ' quenchless feud ' between Ahab and Moby 
Dick which at once arrests the reader's attention, and 
this interest is well maintained to the close, the final 
hunting-scene being a perfect nightmare of protracted 
sensational description. 

Mohif Dick was published when Melville was still a 
young man of thirty-three. Before he was forty he 
produced several other volumes, none of which were 
calculated to add in any degree to his fame, one of 
them, entitled Pierre ; or. The Ambigidlies, being per- 
haps the ne plus uUra in the way of metaphysical 
absurdity. 

' Physic of metaphysic begs defence. 
And metaphysic calls for aid on sense.' 

It may seem strange that so vigorous a genius, 
from which stronger and stronger work might reason- 
ably have been expected, should have reached its 
limit at so early a date ; but it must be remembered 
that the six really notable books of which I have made 
mention were produced within a period of less than 
six years. Whether the transcendental obscurities in 
which he latterly I'an riot were the cause or the con- 
sequence of the failure of his artistic powers is a point 
which it would be difficult to determine with precision. 
His contemporary critics were inclined, not unnaturally, 
to regard his mysticism as a kind of malice prepense, 
and inveighed mournfully against the perversity of ' a 
man born to create, who resolves to anatomise, a man 
born to see, who insists upon speculating,' i and warned 
him, after the publication of Pierre, that his fame was 
on the edge of a precipice, and that if he were wise 
he would thenceforth cease to aff'ect the style of Sir 
Thomas Browne, and study that of Addison. Yet how 
successfully he could at times reproduce the quaint 
conceits of the earlier writer may be seen from the 
following passage of Mardi : — 

' Putnam's Magazine, 1S57. 



HERMAN MELVILLE 



189 



' And truly, since deatli is the last enemy of all, 
valiant souls will taunt him while they may. Yet, 
rather, should the wise regard him as the inflexible 
friend, who, even against our own wills, from life's evils 
triumphantly relieves us. 

' And there is but little difference in the manner of 
dying. To die, is all. And death has been gallantly 
encountered by those who have never beheld blood 
that was red, only its light azure seen through the 
veins. And to yield the ghost proudly, and march out 
of your fortress with all the honours of war, is not a 
thing of sinew and bone. . . . 'Tis no great valour to 
perish sword in hand and bravado on lip cased all in 
panoply complete. For even the alligator dies in his 
mail, and the sword-fish never surrenders. To expire, 
mild-eyed, in one's bed, transcends the death of 
Epaminondas.' 

The chief characteristic of Herman Melville's 
writings is this attempted union of the practical with 
the ideal. Commencing with a basis of solid fact, he 
loves to build up a fantastic structure, which is finally 
lost in the cloudland of metaphysical speculation. He 
is at his best, as in Tijpee, when the mystic element 
is kept in check, and made subservient to the 
clear development of the story ; or when, as in 
certain passages of Mardi and Mohj Dick, the two 
qualities are for the time harmoniously blended. His 
strong attraction to the sea and to ships, which has 
already been alluded to as dating from his earliest boy- 
hood, was closely connected with this ideality of tem- 
perament ; for the sea, he tells us, was to him 'the 
image of the ungraspable phantom of life,' while a ship 
was ' no piece of mechanism merely, but a creature of 
thoughts and fancies, instinct with life, standing at 
whose vibrating helm you feel her beating pulse.' ' I 
have loved ships,' he adds, ' as I have loved men.' 

The tone of Melville's books is altogether frank and 
healthy, though of direct ethical teaching there is little 
or no trace, except on the subject of humanity, on 
which he expresses himself with strong and genuine 
feeling. He speaks with detestation of modern war- 
fare, and devotes more than one chapter of IVhiie 
Jacket to an exposure of the inhuman system of 
flogging, then prevalent in the navy, asking at the 
close if he be not justified 'in immeasurably denounc- 
ing this thing.' In Ti/pcc and Omoo he again and 
again protests against the shameful ill-usage of the 
harmless Pacific islanders by their ' civilised ' invaders. 
' How often,' he says, ' is the term savages incorrectly 
applied ! None really deserving of it were ever yet 
discovered by voyagers or by travellers. They have 
discovered heathens and barbarians, whom by horrible 
cruelties they have exasperated into savages. It may 
be asserted without fear of contradiction, that in all 
the cases of outrages committed by Polynesians 
Europeans have at some time or other been the 
aggressors.' 

That Melville, in spite of his early transcendental 
tendencies and final lapse into the ' illimitable inane,' 



possessed strong powers of observation, a solid grasp 
of facts, and a keen sense of humovn-, will not be denied 
by any one who is acquainted with his writings. Among 
the best of his humorous passages may be instanced 
the admirable scene in Redbiini where the young 
Peter Simple of the story, who imagines that a sailor's 
life will be one of dignified comfort, has his first 
interview with the wily Captain Riga ; or the ditticulties 
experienced by the narrator of Mardi in correctly 
playing the part of ' the White Tagi,' a long-expected 
demi-god for whom he is mistaken by the delighted 
islanders ; or, again, the amusing account in Moh/ 
Dick of the terrors of sharing a bed at a crowded 
hostelry with Queequeg, the barbarian harpooner. As 
a portrayer of character Melville is almost always 
successful. His sea-captains, from the eff'eminate 
' Miss Guy ' to the indomitable Ahab, and his seamen 
one and all, from Toby to old Jarl, are lifelike pictures; 
nothing could be better than the brief, pointed sketch 
of Doctor Long Ghost, the odd, cadaverous, mischief- 
loving physician, who figures so largely in the pages of 
Omoo ; while his characters of the natives of Poly- 
nesia are probably more faithful, as they are certainly 
more vivid, than those drawn by any other writer. 
His literary power, as evidenced in Tijpee and his 
other early volumes, is also unmistakable, his descrip- 
tions being at one time rapid, concentrated, and vigor- 
ous, according to the nature of his subject, at another 
time dreamy, suggestive, and picturesque. The fall 
from the mast-head in White Jacket is a swift and 
subtle piece of writing of which George Meredith 
might be proud ; the death of the white whale in 
Mubi) Dick rises to a sort of epic grandeur and 
intensity. Here is a charming passage of the contrary 
kind, taken from an early chapter of Tijpee: — 

' The sky presented a clear expanse of the most 
delicate blue, except along the skirts of the horizon, 
where you might see a thin drapery of pale clouds 
which never varied their form or colour. The long, 
measured, dirge-like swell of the Pacific came rolling 
along with its surface broken by little tiny waves, 
sparkling in the sunshine. Every now and then a 
shoal of flying fish, scared from the water under the 
bows, would leap into the air, and fall the next moment 
like a shower of silver into the sea. Then you would 
see the superb albicore, with his glittering sides, 
sailing aloft, and, often describing an arc in his descent, 
disappear on the surface of the water. Far off, the 
lofty jet of the whale might be seen, and nearer at 
hand the prowling shark, that villainous foot-pad of 
the seas, would come skulking along, and at a wary 
distance regard us with his evil eye. At times some 
shapeless monster of the deep, floating on the surface, 
would, as we approached, sink slowly into the blue 
waters, and fade away from the sight. But the most 
impressive feature of the scene was the almost unbroken 
silence that reigned over sky and water. Scarcely a 
sound could be heard but the occasional breathing of 
the grampus and the rippling at the cutwater.' 



190 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



When one reads such passages as this (and it is but 
one taken almost at random out of many others of 
equal excellence), it is hard to account for the indiffer- 
ence of the present generation to Herman Melville's 
writings.! In an age which has witnessed a marked 

^ When Mr. Robert Buchanan was on a visit to America, he heard 
that Herman Melville was dwelling 'somewhere in New York, 
having resolved, on account of the public neglect of his works, 
never to write another line.' — Universal Revieiv, May 1S89. 



revival of books of travel and adventure, and which, 
in its greed for narrative or fiction of this kind is often 
fain to content itself with works of a very inferior 
quality, it is a cause for regret that the author of 
Ti/pee and Mardi should have fallen to a great extent 
out of notice, and should be familiar only to a small 
circle of admirers, instead of enjoying the wide reputa- 
tion to which his undoubted genius entitles him. 

H. S. Salt. 



NOTES AND REVIEWS. 



Our principal illustration this month is from an intaglio plate 
by Walker & Bouttall of a drawing by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 
entitled 'Day Dreams.' The drawing is one of those in the 
possession of Mr. William Morris, and is here reproduced with 
his permission. 

As we go to press, two exhibitions are opened in Glasgow — one 
the Annual Exhibition of the Water Colour Society, and the other 
a Black-and-White and Pastel Exhibition. 

The Ayr Statue of Burns is to be done by Mr. George Lawson. 
There was a competition, and a Show of Statuettes, and the Ayr 
folk have, it is to be presumed, got what they wanted. 

The Second Art Congress meets in Edinburgh from 271I1 
October till 4th November. From many points of view the first 
Congress was, after the manner of congresses, a conspicuous 
success. It is too soon yet to say whether the shooting of a second 
arrow in the same direction will result equally well. The sec- 
tional local committees have certainly done their utmost, and have 
prepared a very attractive programme. 

Edinburgh Ladies' Art Club. — The Exhibition of the Edin 
burgh Ladies' Art Club, open at 90 George Street till the 9th of 
November, does not represent any particular phase of art, nor 
suggest any particular reason for its existence. It is, however, a 
pleasant little exhibition. Some of the work is excellent. The 
standard has been kept fairly high ; all the pictures can be seen 
with comfort ; and the room is tastefully arranged. 

We seek in vain for any specially feminine or lady-like quality 
in the work ; indeed, if the exhibition can be said to suggest any 
general reflection at all, it is that the paintings of women, taken 
collectively, are very like those of men. 

The exhibition will remain open from 2Sth October till 9th 
November. There is no charge for admission. 

There has just been completed in Edinburgh the memorial 
slab intended to be placed in the floor of Dunfermline Abbey 
Church, and over the vault of Robert the Bruce, to mark the spot 
where the remains of the great Scottish king and patriot rest. 
The slab, which is in the style of early thirteenth-century English 
brasses, will be the first of this form of memorial in Scotland, and 
although the committee have been prevented through want of 
available space from marking the spot by a more imposing form 
of monument, such as a recumbent effigy, the brass will be less 
obtrusive, though equally lasting, while it is interesting as a work 
of art of another kind, and as a br.iss is of great excellence and of 
regal magnificence. This is enhanced greatly by the gift of ancient 
Egyptian porphyry presented by the chairman of the committee, 
the Earl of Elgin. This porphyiy is from the collection formed 
by the grandfather of the present Earl at Broomhall. It is com- 
posed of pieces, and forms a slab 9 feet in length by 4 feet broad, 
into which is inlaid the life-size brass figure of the King, dressed 
in chain armour, surcoat, and robes, in the attitude of prayer, his 
feet resting on a recumbent lion. His great two-handed sword 
and shield lie by his side. At the head, on the left, is a shield 
with the Scottish arms of the time, and on the left the arms of the 
Earl of Carrick. Surrounding the above is a border of brass 



bearing a suitable inscription in Latin, with round corners richly 
ornamented, and enclosing the heart and crown. The ornamenta- 
tion of the brass is entirely wrought by the hammer and chisel, 
and has been excellently carried out by Messrs. Longden & Co. , 
Sheffield, while the cutting up and inlaying of the porphyry, which 
has been a work of great difficulty, has been carried out by the 
well-known Edinburgh firm of Messrs. Stewart MacGIashen & 
Son. The designs and full-sized cartoons were prepared by Mr. 
W. S. Black, 5 Queen Street, Edinburgh. The slab will, it is 
hoped, be placed in Dunfermline Abbey at an early date. 

Civilisation : its Cause and Cure ; and other Essays. By Edward 
Carpenter. London: Swan Sonnenschein and Co. 1SS9. 

By one of those eddies in human opinion that offer enticing 
opportunity for sweeping generalisations, and yet defy analysis, 
the ideas which are associated with Rousseau's ' noble savage ' have 
again s\virled into prominence. W^e were all good, but we have 
been depraved by society : social evolution, in our time at any 
rate, has described a curve downwards : we are suffering from a 
plague called civilisation, which has for some century or two been 
ravaging Western Europe — these form the burden of the volume 
before us. Nor are they merely a series of amusing paradoxes, 
which one can treat as one does far-fetched jokes. Paradoxes they 
are certainly ; but they are too uncomfortably apt to permit us to 
apprehend and yet pass them by. Mr. Carpenter has somehow 
contrived to withdraw himself from conventional points of view, a 
feat possible only to one with quite exceptional imaginative power.. 
Having reached this standpoint, he has speedily discovered that, 
like a photographic lens, the conventional vision offers a representa- 
tion of everything upside down, and, like the expert operator he is, 
Mr. Carpenter has taken his head from under the black velvet and 
looked at things upside up and squarely in the face. Whether or 
not he has succeeded entirely in ridding himself of convention, 
what he has done is profoundly interesting and instructive. 
There is indeed much of the mystical man or seer about him, 
so much that one feels instinctively that it is out of stuff like 
this that seers are made — a seer, however, who takes science by 
the nose and wrings it hard, who attacks Boyle and Newton and 
Darwin, who, being at once mathematician and astronomer, is 
equally sceptical of the validity of the law of the compressibility of 
gases of Boyle and of the law of gravitation of Newton, and who, 
being perhaps something of a biologist, incidentally scoffs at 
Darwin for the insufficiency of his theory of the survival of the 
fittest. The rationale of this attitude of mind is fairly obvious. It 
is the ultra-scepticism of the supremely religious mind. The old 
attack upon the generalisations of persons who are students of 
physical science — for it amounted to this alone — failed because it 
was uninstructed ; the new one is perhaps partially successful be- 
cause it is instructed, and comes largelyfrom the inside. It is 
palpably true that the scholar believed yesterday what the public 
disbelieved, and that to-day the public believes what the scholar 
believed yesterday but has now discarded. Science, then, popu- 
larly so-called, may be likened, as politics were likened by 
Macaulay, to the movement of a snake. Whether Mr. Carpen- 
ter's ideas reside in the head or the tail we must leave our readers 



NOTES AND REVIEWS 



191 



to infer for themselves. Certain inferences, in Ricliter's phrase, 
remain to be drawn : we advise the reader to draw them. It goes 
without saying that the literary style of Mr. Carpenter's essays is 
extremely fascinating, and that the book is no passing piece of 
polemics, but rather a permanent possession. 

Jane Eyre. By Charlotte Brontic. With an Introduction by 
Clement K. Shorter. London : Walter Scott. 

' Good wine needs no bush.' To few books can this be applied 
more confidently than to Jane Eyre. The introduction by Mr. 
Shorter is fresh, interesting, and fair to previous critics. 

Plays. By John Davidson. Greenock : John Davidson. 1SS9. 

This queer volume is full of rude power. One must take it, not 
as an achievement, but as an attempt. And attempts in poetic 
drama are nowadays so rare that it were too harsh measure to 
judge an aspiring dramatist by the standard, say, of Hanilct^ and 
condemn him to the limbo of slated plays because he cannot write 
like Shakespeare. 

Notwithstanding a grievous want of critical faculty and a want 
of that fine sense of humour which enables a man to realise 
when he is cutting a ridiculous figure, there is an abounding 
vigour both in phrase and in setting that gives promise of some- 
thing more worthy from the same hand. There is a chastening 
which conies by experience alone. The expression of Rupert in 
an An Unhistorical Pastoral, the longest play in the volume, 
might be used with perfect aptness to the author : ' Your language 
is too original for ordinary capacities.' To be understood of the 
multitude, Mr. Davidson would need somehow to be provided 
with a Davidson Society for the exposition of his * quaint quint- 
essence.' Yet it needs no great puzzling out after all. The general 
drift can be caught in the average case after an undivided atten- 
tion of a long summer day. It is not so difficult to grasp as the 
differential calculus, or Thomson and Tait, or some of the less 
lucid passages of Mr. Browning. There are three plays — one 
whose title has been already quoted, A Romantic Farce, and 
Scaramouch in. Naxos : A Pantomime, which is the most recent 
and certainly the most mature and powerful of the plays. The 
thorough go of it makes one even long to see it on the stage. It is 
full of excellent quips, and some of the lyrics are capital workman- 
ship. It may be gathered from what has been said that the style 
is at least not conventional. The whole business has the aspect of 
being extended shorthand notes of a series of nightmares, with a cer- 
tain waking artistic unity forced upon it afterwards. Scaramouch 
reminds one in places of Disraeli's Ixion in Heaven and Infernal 
Marriage. There is the same audacious treatment of classical 
pagan conventions, and the same quick-witted, terse dialogue. 
We quote the speech of Silenus at the beginning of the play, 
though it is not perhaps a fair specimen of Mr. Davidson's style, 
which is as varied as it is unconventional, because it is one of the 
briskest passages : — 

' Silenus. Gentle readers — I would fain say, hearers, but I am 
afraid I shall never fool it on the stage — I am very fond of panto- 
mimes. I don't know w'hether I like this one so well as I liked 
those which I witnessed when I was a boy. It is too pretentious, 
I think ; too anxious to be more than a pantomime — this play in 
which I am about to perform. True pantomime is a good- 
natured nightmare. Our sense of humour is titillated and 
strummed, and kicked and oiled, and fustigated and stroked, 
and exalted and bedevilled, and, on the whole, severely handled 
by this self-same harmless incubus ; and our intellects are 
scoffed at. The audience, in fact, is, intellectually, a pantaloon, 
on whom the harlequin-pantomime has no mercy. It is fri- 
volity whipping its schoolmaster, common-sense ; the drama on 
its apex ; art, unsexed, and without a conscience ; the reflec- 
tion of the world in a green, knotted glass. Now, I talked to the 
author, and showed him that there was a certain absence from his 
work of this kind of thing ; but he put his thumbs in his arm-pits, 
and replied with some disdain, "Which of the various dramatic 



forms of the time may one conceive as likeliest to shoot up in the 
fabulous manner of the bean-stalk, bearing on its branches things 
of earth and heaven undreamt of in philosophy ? The sensational 
dramas? Perhaps from them some new development of tragic 
art ; but pantomime seems to be of best hope. It contains in 
crude forms humour, poetry, and romance. It is the childhood 
of a new poetical comedy." Then I saw where he was, and said, 
"God be with you," and washed my hands of him. But I'll do 
my best with my part.' 

The lyric, too, \\'hich follows, is among the best in the series : — 

' Sing of dancing, sing of wine, 
Satyrs and Bacchantes, sing. 
Harlequin and Columbine, 
Leap within our frantic ring. 

Dance, the skies are violet ; 
Dance, our lips with wine are wet ; 

Sing, heigh-ho, the shade is mellow ! 
Twist and twine from dusk till dawn ; 
Feet and hoofs beat bare the lawn : 

Bacchus is a noble fellow ! 

' From our garlands grapes are flung, 
And we tread them in the grass ; 
Ivy, in our tresses strung, 
.Streams behind us as we pass. 

Dance, the skies are violet ; 
Dance, our lips with foam are wet ; 

Sing, the beechen shade is mellow ! 
Bend and bound with one accord ; 
Foot it firm, and trench the sward. 

Bacchus is a splendid fellow ! 

' Round we spin ; our starry eyes 

Glimmer through our tossing manes. 
Time is ending ; wisdom dies ; 
We are drunk ; and Bacchus reigns. 

Dance, the skies are violet ; 

The dust with juice of grapes is wet ; 

Sing, the deepening shade is mellow ! 
Dance the night into the day ; 
Dance into eternity ; 

Bacchus is the only fellow ! ' 

A preposterous, rollicking, clever, notable play, Scaramouch 
has more brains in it than half a dozen Fajists Up to Date, or any 
other of the imbecile burlesques which a too patient public tolerates 
because it has so little else wherewith to amuse itself. Perhaps 
there is just tlie one word to the wise that was needed in the 
speech of Scaramouch the showman, who humbugs everj'body but 
himself : — 

' What am I to do ? The world is old ; it has been satiated 
with originality, and in its dotage cries bitterly for entertainment. 
A public man must tlierefore be extravagant in order to distin- 
guish himself My felicitous alliteration and prompt non- 
blasphemous oaths constitute my note, which is the literary term 
for trade-mark — a species of catch-word, in fact. Sweetness and 
light ! do you understand me? ' 

The Poetical Works of Leigh Hunt and Thomas Hood [selected]. 
Edited, with Introduction, by J. Harwood Panting. 
London : Walter Scott. 

The introduction by Mr. Panting is thoroughly bright and 
clever. His criticism, both of Hunt and of Hood, is invariably apt, 
and the selection is representative enough. Examples alone are 
given of Hood's serious poems — The Song of the Shirt, Eugene 
Aram, for example : the comic poems are deferred to a subsequent 
volume of the same series. 



192 THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



TO THE NORTH SEA. 

SEAWARD song ! — O tossing, restless waves. 
How you do eiy to Heaven with infinite song 
Of winds, and storm-swept ships, and winters long. 
And gulfs where Death for ever digs new graves 
For living valorous men, now sea-kings, now sea-slaves ! 

How shall I weave your wintry chime in words ? — 
How should I sing it to this worldly race 
Who live for gain, and little care for grace 
So viewless as the song that your wind accords — 
So idle as the song of the wind and the wild sea-birds ? 

Colin Percival. 



METEMPSYCHOSIS. 

WHATEVER is to-day has been, 
There's nothing new in this world's ways, 
And, as upoii my arm j'ou lean. 
At Delos 'neath the almond sprays 
I hear the birds sing roundelays. 
And glance into your eyes' deep blue 
As when, at Sophron's mimic plays, 
Falernian I sipped with you. 

The slopes of Cynthus shimmered green. 
Beneath the slanting sun's warm rays 
The sea lay still m sleep serene ; 
Without a thought of Death who slays 
We talked of Dian's son, who strays. 
Crowned with sweet roses, 'mid the dew. — ■ 
How could I dream that life decays ? 
Falernian I sipped with you. 

Long centuries have rolled between 
Since we dwelt by Aeolian bays. 
But your fair face and modest mien. 
The blush that flows whene'er I praise. 
The lingering look that love betrays. 
Call up the words that thrilled me through 
When, 'neath the glamour of your gaze, 
Falernian I sipped with you. 



Envoi. 

Princess, when in far-distant da3's 
Once more old friendship we renew. 
In memory of vanished Mays 
Falernian I '11 sip with you. 

James Bowker. 



Edinhursh: T. and A. Constabk, Printers to Her Majesty. 




THE TOWER OF BRASS. 



By E, BaaNz-JoMEB. A.R.A. 



By permission of William CoDcal, Jr.. Esq. 



The Scottish Art Review 

Edited bv JAMES MAYOR. 

Vol. II. DECEMBER 1889. No. 19. 

THE WANDERER'S EVENSONG. 

(Goethe.) 

O'ER every mountain-peak 
Is peace ; 
High in the topmost trees 
Canst thou trace 
Hardly a breath ; 
The birds sleep on the bough. 
Wait, soon shalt thou, 
Too, be at peace. 

Translated bi/ Edward Cahi>enteu. 

AN AUTUMN GARDEN. 

COME, let us linger here a little space. 
While red clouds glimmer in the jewelled sky. 
And soft winds whisper where the dead leaves lie ; 
Our life to-day to-morrow will efface ; 
The winged hours speed for ever in their race, 
Bearing us blindfold to eternity ; 
The roses droop and fall, — all joys pass by. 
Torn by relentless Time from our embrace. 

In that dim world of which no mortal knows. 
Bloom there our faded flowers for other eyes ? 
Or does earth claim them as the winter snows ? 
Of the hereafter know we nature's lore. 
Oh let us love, dear love, till life denies, 
Lest we meet not on death's eternal shore. 

Arthur Tomson. 

vni .. II -^ ^^ 



194. 



THE SCOITISH AUT REVIEW 



THE PLAGUE OF 'PRETTINESS.' 



fl'lHE second exhibition of the Arts and Crafts, at 
-L tlie New Gallery, has again brought the topic of 
home decoration within the pale of polite conversation. 
For a time it will be entirely ' good form ' for most 
people to feign at least some interest in oi-naniental 
design. As the average person — one might almost 
say, the average artist — dreams not of the yawning 
gulf dividing pictorial from decorative art, the common- 
places likely to be provoked by this subject will 
probably be no more edifying, as criticism, than the 
vapid picture gossip so freely proft'ered as a substitute 
for conversation during the months of May and June 
each year. 

At the press view of the exhibition it was a touch- 
ing sight to notice art critics otherwise well-informed 
hopelessly wandering in the mazes of new materials 
and methods, in search of apt phrases and telling 
adjectives. For once the whole vocabulary of ' chiaro- 
scuro,' 'carnations,' 'tones,' 'values,' and all the brave 
words we know so well, had lost their mystic force. 
Nor did the names of the exhibitors indicate, by long- 
standing precedent, the proper amount of attention to 
be devoted to each. Whereas in picture-shows the right 
number of lines to allot to this R.A. and that outsider 
is fairly well established by annual custom, here, after 
Sir Frederick Leighton, Mr. Walter Crane, Mr. William 
Morris, and one or two others had been duly criticised, 
there waited a huge army of unknown artists, with the 
danger of choosing the wrong one only too fatally 
obvious. The catalogues first issued had no alphabeti- 
cal list of exhibitors, so that the well-intentioned 
critic was actually driven to pick for himself, and 
record his extemporaneous opinion. The novelty of 
such a course is in itself ample reason for the ex- 
istence of a society thift has provoked a result so 
unique. In the days when the wild aesthete reigned his 
brief hour, from ' living up to his blue china ' down to 
the slang of the comic papers, ' too-too,' 'utter,' and 
' intense,' the terminology of the movement was toler- 
ably familiar ; but in this new land where the peacock 
and sunflower are no more common than in real life, 
the language of its natives, and the habits of its crafts- 
men, are almost unknown save to the few who really 
find a continued pleasure in following the progress of 
the minor arts. 

In view of the formal introduction of the industrial 
Arts and Crafts to 'society ' proper, it is again possible 
to discuss the topic of house decoration without ofi'ence, 
even as when the Trafalgar Square riots or the dock 
strikes were in progress it was permissible to refer once 
more to the East-end and its misery, despite the fact 
that personally conducted expeditions in the slums 
had, like Ecstheticism, faded from the list of fashionable 
recreations. 

It is a noteworthy coincidence that the dying years 
of another century should witness a passion foi- ornate 



adornment of our houses and extravagant employment 
of ornament therein. Without going back further than 
the palmy days of Good Queen Anne, we find a some- 
what similar craze for over-abundant bric-a-brac and 
petty fancies in furnishing. Almost all the trifles we 
admire to-day could be paralleled by those that were 
the mode a hundred years ago, — black boys for pages 
being one prominent exception. Yet oddly enough, 
the very architecture and furniture we specially nick- 
name ' Queen Anne ' would have been as novel to the 
royal tea-drinker and her court as they were to us but a 
few years ago. Of late we have seen gradually invad- 
ing the dwellings of that great middle class fondly 
termed the backbone of English society a prodigal 
outlay upon useless ornaments, that has certainly 
deprived the backbone of its cherished stiffness. For 
to-day a bui-lesque attempt to furnish in a way approved 
by Art and Culture has resulted in a chaotic mixture 
more suggestive of the traditional surroundings of the 
demi monde than of rigidly respectable worshippers 
of Mrs. Grundy. This mania for the accumulation of 
worthless bibelots is not only deplorable in itself, but 
raises doubts whether the divine discontent with our 
insular ugliness, preached by sesthetic apostles since 
the Great Exhibition of 1851, has resulted in any real 
improvement in the national taste. 

For the way to furnish according to approved prin- 
ciples is no unwritten law to-day. Even the most de- 
mure quarterly reviews have occasionally condescended 
to offer us advice in the matter. Famous men have left 
their criticisms of Buonarroti and Sandro Botticelli to 
become confidentially critical over the shape of our 
coal-scuttles. Ladles of title or taste, and women 
with neither, have implored us, in many touching little 
pamphlets and essa3's, to repent us of our whilom 
indifl^erence to art in the home. The ardent prosely- 
tisers have preached artistic salvation to the masses, as 
heretofore theologically inclined amateurs were wont to 
attack them upon more serious topics. 

Unfortunately this torrent of exhortation has not 
fallen upon deaf ears, but has been only too eagerly 
misinterpreted. Tottenham Court Road itself has 
seen the error of its former ways, and issues little 
tracts to possible victims, bearing the legends ' Hints 
upon Art Furnishing,' ' Advice upon matters of Taste 
in the House,' or similar mottoes, arranged diagonally 
on its wrappers in what it believes to be a Japanese 
manner. The whole army of preachers love to set up 
a purely imaginary bogey, and to demolish him as 
seriously as they can ; and their worst enemy could 
not deny them the dismal virtue of solemnity. In 
their plaint they deplore the fondness of the masses 
for hearthrugs pictorially resplendent with tigers, 
glass vases called 'lustres,' coal-scuttles with mother- 
of-pearl moonlight, and such things, that as a matter 
of simple fact are as extinct as the dodo itself. The 



THE PLAGUE OF ' PRETTINESS ' 



195 



suspicious monotony of the vices they select for attack 
is as evident as the pet phrases they employ by way 
of praise. ' Art-colours/ ' hand-painted/ ' quaint,' 
'with a Chippendale feeling,' 'early English,' and the 
rest of the hideous technicalities, are the common 
property of most of the reformers. But after they 
have done their best, it is almost safe to say, that for 
any evidence of consistent taste in the houses of 
people outside the so-called artistic set, the average 
drawing-room to-day is no whit better than the 
dark period when polished walnut wood and magenta 
rep held undivided sway therein ; it may commit a 
virtue by mistake, but its daily misdemeanours make 
the solitary right-going assume the aspect of a re- 
pentant renegade. 

Time was when taste was supposed to be, if not an 
occult science, at least only teachable to those who 
were already versed in the polite arts. Now, however, 
it appears to be considered the first word in the educa- 
tion of the 'masses,' one that can be imparted to 
countesses and costermongers, the wives of working- 
men and millionaires with equal facility. From pon- 
derous philosophers who preach good taste in the garb 
of the higher morality (even going so far as to employ 
the terms 'objective' and 'subjective' to that end), to 
feminine correspondents with fascinating pseudonyms, 
who write in the weekly fashion papers, the ethics of 
taste are explained with irritating insistency of detail 
to any one who will listen. 

But reticence in the use of ornament, or intrinsic 
value of the decoration suggested, is rarely exacted. 
On going into the rooms of our modern palaces — hotels, 
and like places — we are confronted with such an in- 
continent burst of adornment, that the eye wearies 
of the overdone splendour, and longs for the sweet 
repose of the British Museum refreshment-room. To 
single out any inch of decoration in these elaborate 
apartments is like trying to catch the low murmur of 
a gracious sentence amid the babel of the streets in a 
great city. Walls, ceiling, floor, are all what artists 
term ' noisy.' What should tell with breadth and 
dignity is cut up into bewildering details, wherefrom 
polished metals, colours, stained glass, tiles and potter}- 
vie with each other in their effort to dazzle the be- 
holder. Ten thousand motives of ornament, each, 
possibly, admirable in itself, destroy the charm of any 
one of them. For too often it is not that a master 
mind has welded all these points into a great harmony, 
as Wagner — to borrow an illustration from the sister 
art of music — chose to introduce a superfluity of 
beauty into one composition, but rather as though an 
orchestra were to play one of his most complex operas 
backwards. Each note would in that case be still 
enforced by its rightful harmony, but the lack of 
sequence would probably make the effect somewhat 
confused. 

If we yet cling to the hope of past decades, and 
wish to educate the ' people ' to appreciate really fine 
art, we must be careful that we teach them to 
decline worthless trifles at the same time. In the 



marriage-service the promise to love the one taken is 
coupled with ' forsaking all others.' This renunciation 
of less worthy objects of affection is perhaps more easy 
in the ceremony of house-furnishing — that is so often 
the first important occupation of a newly-married 
couple — than in the preliminary function itself. For 
it is of little use to gain converts to the beautiful as 
set forth by Mr. William Morris and his fellow-workers, 
if the love of vulgar display be not abandoned. Nor 
is it a gain to inspire a reader with a regard for Mr. 
Walter Pater's writings, if 'shilling shockers' or 
' penny novelettes ' continue to please him equally. 
To add what we consider a higher taste to the already 
existing depraved ones, is more likely to confuse his 
respect for the good than to wean the patient from 
his vices. For the force of uglifying is as real as the 
power of beautifying, and although one lovely thing 
may raise a commonplace room to comparative beauty, 
one distinctly vulgar and hideous object can mar an 
otherwise pleasant apartment. 

The plague ot small framed photographs, badly 
modelled pug-dogs, and a whole zoological garden of 
animals, terra-cotta plaques, ' hand-painted ' cardboard 
imitations of the same,» tambourines, guitars, drain- 
pipes, butter-tubs, and hundreds of other impossible 
objects, serenely bedaubed with pictures, and accorded 
their place in fashionably ' artistic ' homes, has grown 
unbearable, and needs drastic reformation. Had these 
monstrous intruders been decorated on the principles 
that govern reasonable ornament, the cheap and 
obtrusive crowd had been bad enough ; but when the 
art they show is but the art of conceit, and their 
skill a missing quality, it is strange that even fashion 
could have afforded sanctuary to such detestable ex- 
crescences for so long. 

Two rooms actually existing may be quoted as 
examples of this. In one a really beautiful picture by 
Mr. Burne Jones, full of his gorgeous colour and 
thoughtful invention, entirely fails to redeem the 
tawdry surroundings of modern black-and-gold furni- 
ture, with the Parian statuettes, unlovely cretonnes, 
and other items of the advertising upholsterer's wares. 
In the other, furnished with meagre simplicity, all the 
objects distinctly useful and undecorative, a landscape 
by Corot loses nothing in its environment, but makes 
the whole room memorable, far more so than many an 
effort of very conscientious art-seekers. 

It has been urged against us to-day by many writers 
that our power of holding opinions diametrically op- 
posed Avith apparent ease and satisfaction has never 
been equalled at any stage of human civilisation. To 
serve God and Mammon, with no suspicion of the 
logical absurdity of the position, is common enough in 
thought and morals, and especially in the subject of 
this paper. We become recruits in a crusade for 
beauty, and indulge the while in unspeakable artistic 
crimes. Perhaps we start by furnishing a room simply 
and pleasantly, and then the fascination of a course of 
cheap shopping degrades that innocent place to be- 
come a chamber of horrors. The immoral force of a 



196 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIE\A^ 



rush liat crumpled, bedecked with ribbons, and perched 
upon a bamboo tripod, is sufficient to debase the most 
virtuous surroundings. A bracket, cut crescent-fashion, 
and violently enamelled, with its shelves laden with 
spoils from the ticketed baskets outside the portals of 
drapery stores, can be backed at perilous odds to 
destroy the repose of the most unimpeachable draw- 
ing-room. 

The days when the ' Lake of Chromo ' smiled from 
every wall, when white-and-gold wall-papers made 
every object a sharp silhouette against them, when 
libellous wax flowers flaunted beneath glass shades, 
may be past, but the spirit of the bead mat and Berlin 
wool sofa-cushion lives and works to-day. 

These connnents and warnings are but, as flippant uni- 
versity men have said of the sermons of a well-known 
preacher, 'glimpses into the obvious' ; yet while such 
trite axioms are disregarded, it is useless to expect the 
' Arts and Crafts,' or any similar movement, to redeem 
us from the old taunt of Britannic tastelessness. 

Of course the first and last quest should be to gain 
usefulness with as little that is positively ugly as may 
be ; then, if without hindrance to the pm-pose of the 
object — be it candlestick or cathedral — it is possible to 
make it decorative and beautiful, it is naturally worth 
the effort. But unless the ornament decorates the thing 
itself, and exists solely to beautify that to which it 
is applied, it cannot be held to be true decoration. 
/ A Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Bric-a- 
brac would have an unlimited field to work upon. To 
introduce a crowd of articles that kill each other — to 
use an English idiom, — or of colours that swear at each 
other — to employ a French one, — into that symbol of 
incarnate peace and virtue, an English home, is surely 
a barbarous and cruel pastime, that should be deemed 
but little above bull-baiting and cock-fighting. 

To say that even in the ordinary shops and stores of 
the present time no article can be found that is at its 
worst negatively beautiful is absurd. The influence 
of improved design is evident enough everywhere. 
Yet if the vendor sets beauty and its opposite side by 
side with charming impartiality, so do buyers choose 
either or both with entire catholicity. Of course there 
is always a vigorous power that works for evil ; vulgar 
people — of whom commerce know's as large a propor- 
tion as the peerage itself — naturally love vulgar 
things, and try to induce their neighbours to share 
their preference. 

Yet as schoolmen employ a middle term between 
the positive extremes of right and wrong, so no taste 
is better than bad taste, if less admirable than good 
taste. If charity begins at home, culture, it is to be 
feared, too often ends there with it. The vice of 
wishing to be thought artistic is so common, that it is 
a bold thing to imagine there are any guiltless. Yet 
if any of those who would fain be art lovers, and are 
not swayed by passing fashions, would only reconsider 
his (or her) position, let them remember the beauti- 
ful simplicity of no taste, and reflect how consistent 
love of usefulness, with no regard for so-called pretti- 



ness, marks with a dignity all its own its undecorated 
ambassador. He would be a plucky man who dared 
to say he loved practical ugliness plain and straight- 
forward ; but the welcome his opinions would evoke 
from genuine lovers of beauty would probably astonish 
him, and make him unduly conscious of his merit, yet 
he would deserve almost unqualified praise, and be 
nearer the right side than the wrong. 

Cycles in taste are wont to occur in somewhat similar 
sequence, and as the last epoch of overcrowded orna- 
mentation gave place to the severe restraint of an 
ultra-classical revival, we may look forward to the new 
century for a return to simplicity, or at least the pre- 
tence of it, in such things. The endless struggle 
between Classic and Romantic, or Hellenic and Ger- 
manic Art — it matters little which terms express the 
strife — has, of late years, resulted in the triumph of the 
latter; whether the advent of restrained emotions 
in the concrete expression of our taste will be but a 
newly renascent Classic period, it is yet impossible to 
forecast. The increased appreciation of Wren will no 
doubt be followed by a revival of pleasure in the 
works of Wedgwood and Flaxman ; but whatever be its 
shape, that the reaction of demure chastity will suc- 
ceed blatant vulgarity is no doubtful augury. With 
increased regard for the beauty of fitness, the intrinsic 
quality of the thing decorated becomes all-important. 
In such a time we may hope for genuine textiles woven 
of pure material, honestly solid metal-work, and surfaces 
of real marble or fine woods to adoi-n our homes. 

The exhibition of the Arts and Crafts is perhaps 
more noticeable to a casual visitor for its surface 
decoration, but it offers a nobler thing in its dislike 
of pretentious shams, its employment of hand-wrought 
work in place of machine-made patterns, and its 
claim that while the best available decoration is the 
only one to be adopted, so the raw material and its 
mechanical finish must also be the very best, even if 
the expense forbids any adornment of its surface. 

To be satisfied with mere prettiness is a degrading 
state of mind, far more worthy of contempt than the 
most sordid utilitarian mood. Beauty may indeed 
include the trivial charm of prettiness; but no amount 
of the lesser quality can atone for disregard of the 
higher one. To keep the surroundings of our homes 
useful, comfortable, and beautiful is a worthy aim, but 
all the care to make them satisfactory is useless if a 
lavish heterogeneous muddle of petty gewgaws, or an 
overwhelming amount of commonplace ornament, is 
held to have gained the desired end. If every item 
in the home is perfectly fitted for its purpose — simple 
and unornamented in its appearance, but of genuine 
material, the beauty unwittingly secured will pro- 
bably exceed many far more elaborate efforts that have 
started by confusing prettiness and beaut_y, and so 
foredoomed their own failure. 

For in all decoration it must be remembered that 
the pointed epigram of ornament is but silver, and 
that it is the quiet silence of the plain surface which 
is golden. Gleeson White. 



RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND 



197 




^ f?^^ '^^ -'%-^. 






RECENT ARCHITECTURE IN THE WEST OF SCOTLAND.— III. 

KELLIE HOUSE-R. C. Y. CLUB-HOUSE. 



IN our last number we concluded, with a description 
of Hyndland Church, our notice of recent archi- 
tectural developments in the domain ecclesiastic, and 
shall now direct our attention to what is being done in 
domestic art. 

Of all phases of architecture these two share the 
closest ties of sentiment and history — in our own 
country they alone were practised in earlier times. 
Offices and warehouses, town halls and railway stations 
did not exist in Scotland (nor in any other country 
as far as the first and last categories are concerned) 
during the period when architectui'e flourished, but 
our old houses are little inferior to the churches which 
immediately preceded them. Turning, therefore, to 
the domestic architecture of the present day, we find 
here also good work being done. In this case, it is 
true, there had not been previous retrogression as in 
ecclesiastical work to give greater effect to subsequent 
revival. Our Calvinistic ancestors of last century and 
this, while entertaining scruples as to the embellish- 
ment of the house of God, objected in nowise where 
the means were forthcoming to lodging themselves 
with comfort and dignity. Accordingly, there were 
found architects to carry out their wishes, and the fine 
traditions of our old Scottish domestic work were not 
lost in the country-houses carried out by Adams and 
Brj'ce, with others of minor note. To-day these 
traditions are not only being upheld, but acted on more 
fully and with broader purpose by some of our living 



architects, with results which well merit our considera- 
tion in these pages. 

Our first example of modern domestic architectm-e 
is Kellie House, a large country mansion designed for 
Mr. Alexander Stephen by Mr. William Leiper, now 
nearing completion. The site selected for the new 
house is on the brow of a low hill immediately above 
the station and pier of Wemyss Bay, commanding 
magnificent views of the arm of the sea into which 
flows the river Clyde. It is built of a red sandstone 
of good colour, quarried on the estate ; the roofs are 
covered with green slates, with red stone ridges. The 
style may be described as a fine type of domestic 
Renaissance, dignified yet picturesque, giving evidence 
of extended study and thorough knowledge of the 
early development of that style in England and 
Scotland, with suggestions in places of inspiration drawn 
from the chateaux of France. Yet there is here no 
suggestion of that mixture of styles which we find in the 
woi-k of the speculative builder or raw architect, who, 
struck by what he considers ' good bits ' in the pages 
of his architectural journal, associates theiii at random 
on the same building,. regardless of congruity in style 
or scale. It is rather the creation of the matured artist, 
who has absorbed and assimilated the best manifesta- 
tions of his art, and so produces a style which may 
truly be called his own, and which displays at once 
unity of purpose and completeness in design. 

The general arrangement of the buildings is that of 



198 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 




— -t vX-iT '-" " '■' — ^ 



a hollow square with a small paved coiii-t in the centre, 
the two principal sides of which form the west front, 
looking across the Firth of Clyde, and the north, 
looking out to sea ; these contain the public rooms, and 
are generally three stories in height. The south side, 
looking up the river towards the Loch Long hills, in 
which are placed the private apartments of Mr. 
Stephen, and the back, consisting of kitchen and 
offices, do not rise beyond two stories. The principal 
entrance, situated on the north front, leads into a large 
hall, with a bay window and open stone fireplace. An 
archway opposite the entrance opens on the principal 
staircase, with a richly designed open oak stair, lit by 
two stone-mullioned windows. Between the hall and 
staircase proper intervenes a broad corridor, w ith stone 
fireplace and bay window to the court, which runs the 
whole length of the north and west sides, giving access 
to the public rooms ; to the left of the entrance the 
dining-room, facing north, in the corner to the right 
the billiard-room, and facing west the morning-room 
and large drawing-room. At the further end of this 
corridor is the garden entrance, whence, at right 
angles, a smaller corridor, also lit from the court, com- 
municates with the private business-room, bedroom, 
etc., terminating in the porch forming the business 
entrance, to the back. On the upper floors we find 
the same general disposition, the corridors lit from the 
court, the bedrooms, most of them with deep bay win- 
dows, looking out over the wooded country to the sea. 
Regarding the interior fittings and decoration it is as 
yet too early to. speak, as the work is not yet sufln- 



ciently advanced. We understand, however, that the 
proprietor has thought fit to take this, one of the most 
interesting and important parts of domestic archi- 
tecture, out of the hands of his architect, than whom 
none could have been found more capable of directing 
it, and has given it over entirely to a firm of decorators. 
This action is much to be regretted ; a house such as 
Kellie should be complete, harmonious, in convenience 
fulfilling in every respect the requirements of the 
occupier, and distributed, therefore, according to his 
ideas, but as regards its artistic development it should 
be under the direction of one man if a satisfactory 
result is to be achieved, the exterior grouping naturally 
translating the arrangement of the interior, while it in 
turn should correspond in scale, in coloui-, in design, 
to the character of the outside. The subversion of 
this natural arrangement, besides being unjust to the 
architect, and injurious to art, is likely in the end to 
be little in the interest of the proprietor himself, and 
still less in that of the craftsman who has thus rashly 
undei-taken a work upon his own responsibility which 
he would have had the assurance of carrying out most 
successfully under the guidance and restraint of a 
competent architect. But to return to the exterior : 
here we remark the ability with which the whole has 
been designed, for while the sky-line is constantU 
broken with gables, turrets, and groups of chimneys, 
the house in general is so large in treatment, and the 
main roof lines so simple, that a breadth and dignity of 
ensemble is obtained, which is heightened rather than 
otherwise by the picturesqueness of its parts. This 
is especially notable in the river front, as may be 
seen in our illustration. Of the various elevations 
it is unnecessary to speak in detail ; that to the 
north is perhaps the least satisfactory, the gradual 
dwindling away of the buildings to the back, and 
the variety in size and outline of the dormers 
and gables producing a feeling of unrest. The 
porch, very English and Elizabethan in feeling, is 
a charming piece of design in itself, but the door- 
way seems small and out of scale as the principal 
entrance to such an extended range of buildings. 
The bay window to the right of the porch gives light 
to the hall, while to the right again rises a bold 
chimney-gable, the small windows on the splays sug- 
gesting delightful ingle-neuks in the interior. The 
half-timber work which appears in the service wing 
dormer has been freely employed throughout the 
building — in the porch to business-room entrance and 
dormers in the court — with happy effect. In the river 
front we find a fine range of stone-mullioned and tran- 
somed windows on the ground floor, lighting succes- 
sively the billiard-room, morning-room, and drawing- 
room. The corbelled-out oriel on the face of the gable 
is a suggestive Scottish feature, while the bow window, 
carried up from the ground on the side of the gable, 
gives a delightful variety of outline to this corner. The 
great octagonal turret, with high-pointed roof and 
gilded vane, forms an effective finish to this front, and 



200 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



a counterpoise to the gable at the other end, while it 
gives additional importance to the gable on which it 
abuts. This great gable, with its moulded corbie-steps 
and lofty chimney-stacks, its breadth cleverly broken 
up from below by a projecting gablet, porch, and 
balcony, is a bold conception ably carried out, for, 
gathering up as it does the whole of the main roof 
within its outline, it is of the greatest value in giving 
unity and strength to the composition. The private 
wing, which extends from here southwards with stone 
dormers flanked at each end by a boldly projecting 
turret, is a picturesque composition very complete in 
itself, yet grouping well with the main mass of the 
buildings. To the back the low offices and outhouses, 
with squat ogival-headed windows and tall chimneys, 
the half-timber porch and dormers, form a succession 
of picturesque corners, and is all that could be wished 
in an elevation that is not intended, and from the 
nature of the ground is not likely, to be seen in the 
mass. 

A few miles up the Firth, on the opposite side, 
we find another example of domestic architecture 
worthy our attention ; it is the headquarters of the 
Royal Clyde Yacht Club at Hunter's Quay, by Mr. T. 
L. Watson of Glasgow. Here we have not to do with 
a great mansion-house, but with a seaside hotel and 
yachting club-house, where the windows to the sea 
must be many and open, and the balconies of ample 
extent. The style chosen, therefore, the projecting 
timber-and-plaster front with many windows, which, 
though brought to greatest perfection in England, was 
no stranger to Scotland in earlier times, is peculiarly 
suited to the requirements of the building ; and the 
exterior, lively, bright in colour, and picturesque, gives 
a fitting indication of its destination. Regarding the 
plan of the building, the point of chief importance has 
been to put all the public rooms to the front, while a 
double entrance had to be provided for separate access 
to hotel and club. Between the two (that to the left on 
our drawing being the public or hotel entrance) extends 



the dining-room, with three large oriel windows open- 
ing on the verandah. The low one-story wing to the 
extreme left contains the drawing-room, with oriel 
windows to front and side. The first floor, reached by 
stairs at each end, is occupied by the reading-room 
over the dining-room, with windows opening on the 
extended balcony, the smoking-room in the tower with 
large bay window, and the billiard-room to the right, 
a fine apai'tment, with open timber roof and covered 
balcony in front. The second floor is entirely occupied 
by bedrooms. As regards the exterior, while the com- 
position generally is pleasing and harmonious, there is 
rather a feeling of overcrowding, too many features 
for so small a fa9ade, a defect due, doubtless, in some 
sort to the necessity already mentioned of keeping 
everything to the front. Could the two large dormers 
have been modified and the roof-line left to tell in all 
its length, the composition would have been better in 
outline and not less picturesque. The square tower 
scarcely corresponds either in interest or in the impor- 
tance such a feature requires with the rest of the 
building, and one is inclined to wonder whether the 
architect had any preconceptions in making hotel 
visitors enter by a Gothic doorway, while club mem- 
bers have a Renaissance portal reserved for them. Was 
it perchance that while hostelries flourished in mediae- 
val times the club is altogether a modern institution ? 
The drawing-room wing is a good piece of design, and 
owing to its arrangement at an irregular angle with the 
rest of the building is of great importance in the pic- 
turesque grouping of the whole. In external colour- 
ing every advantage has been taken of the variety of 
the materials ; the sandstone dressings are white, the 
rubble filling of blue whin, the timber stained a dark 
brown, with the rough-cast plaster between ol a 
yellowish tone, while the roofs are of red tiles — the 
whole forming a bright yet harmonious scheme of 
colour well suited to the character of the building 
and its surroundings. 







iH-" 



CHATEAUX ON THE LOIRE 



201 



CHATEAUX ON THE LOIRE. 







S^c. 



,ieu 



1, 4-E. • 



THE district of the Loire and Toiiraine offers to 
every lover of art and antiquity, especially to the 
architect, a rich field for study and an unfailing source 
of delight. Here he will find a history writ in stone, 
in his own language, of one of the most interesting 
developments in the life of a nation, the transition 
from mediaevalism to modernism — the Renaissance. 
How powerfully architecture here expresses the life of 
a people ! how it reflects its manners and customs ! 
Here, as perhaps nowhere else, will the architect 
obtain fresh inspirations and new ideals, will realise 
anew the meaning and mission of his art. 

From Orleans to Tours and Langeais there is situated 
along the banks of the Loire or its tributaries an un- 
rivalled series of chateaux ; scarcely a town and village 
will the traveller pass through that does not contain 
some interesting relic of the past. The mention of 
Blois, Amboise, Chenonceaux, and others will bring 
b ffi delightful memories to the minds of those who 



have once visited them. The country has a quiet 
beauty of its own, and though perhaps a little flat 
and monotonous to northern eyes, who could fail to be 
charmed with the lovely views that are obtained from 
the terraces of the old ch&teaux perched on the heights 
above the river's bank ? The railways are comfortable 
if somewhat slow, and good cheer awaits the weary 
traveller at the hotels. The ' petit vin du pays ' may, 
it is true, at times be a little bitter, but the fastidious 
can console themselves with a bottle of the excellent 
'grand Mousceaux.' The history of the district is 
intimately associated with our own ; the old castle of 
Loches, with its gloomy dungeons, was once the strong- 
hold of the Counts of Anjou, and the cradle of the 
Plantagenet race. Henry ii. of England built the 
castle of Chinon, where he also died. It is further 
celebrated as the scene of Joan of Arc's first appear- 
ance in public, in the famous interview with Charles vii. 
I propose, however, to confine my attention chiefly 
to the chateaux, and their development under the in- 
fluences of the Renaissance ; but before describing 
them in detail, a short sketch of the causes and condi- 
tions of the Renaissance may not be out of place. 
Louis XI. had broken the power of the great feudal 
lords, and done much to unify the country, and the 
overthrow of the old system rendered it possible for 
France to enter on a new period. He introduced the 




202 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 




newly invented art of printing, setting up presses in 
the Sorbonne. He further also prepared the country 
for the change that was imminent by the encourage- 
ment of learning and the establishment of universities. 
The necessary impetus from without was given by the 
campaigns of Charles viii., Louis xii., and Francois i. 
in Italy, the land where already, from the beginning 
of the fifteenth century, the Renaissance had taken 
full possession of the life of the nation. Charles viii., 
kept in ignorance of the world's atf'airs by the jealousy 
of his father, Louis xi., had spent his time reading 
romances of chivalry, and dreamt of rivalling the deeds 
of Charlemagne, of conquering Italy, Greece, and 
Constantinople. On his accession to the throne, there- 
fore, he eagerly set out on a campaign to realise his 
dreams of conquest and glory. In 149-1! the French 
army crossed the Alps. Its progress through Italy 
was more like a triumphal procession than an invasion. 
One constant round of gaiety and pleasure awaited 
him. At Turin Charles was feted by the Duchess of 
Savoy, Florence hailed him as her deliverer from the 
oppression of the Medici, and Rome opened her gates 
to him. The climax was reached at Naples, where 
King Ferdinand ii., betrayed by his allies, was obliged 
to flee before the approaching victors, and Charles 
crowned himself king in his stead. One can well 
imagine the effect on the young king of Italian art in 
the full flush of its new life — that wonderful growth, 
which even yet exerts a fascination and charm beyond 
that of all other countries. Filled with the memories 
of the palaces of Florence and Rome, the villas round 
Naples, with their open loggias, their terraced gardens 
and marble fountains, Charles returned to France deter- 



mined to reproduce in his own country some of the 
wonders he had seen. 

In Louis .xii.'s reign the influence of Italy became 
still more potent, and one could in truth say of her, as 
was said of Greece, that she ruled her conquerors, for 
they adopted her civil.sation and her arts. Jean 
d'Auton gives an account of the beauties of Pavia, 
which he describes in glowing language : ' Que mieux 
ressembloit uu Eden paradisque qu'un domain ter- 
restre.' This admiration of Italy is further reflected 
in the writings of Rabelais, in whose Pantagruel Epi- 
stemon recounts a visit to Italy, and expresses his 
admiration of the beautiful situation, the domes and 
the palaces of Florence. In contrast, a priest of 
Amiens represents the Philistinism of the day, and 
speaks thus : ' Je ne S9ay quel plaisir avez pris voyants 
les Lions et Africanes . . . pareillement voyants les 
porcespics et austruches au Palais du Seigneur Philippi 
Strozzi. Par ma foy, nos fieulx, j'aimerois mieulx veoir 
un bony et gras oizon en broche. Ces porphyres, ces 
marbres sont beaulx. Je n'en dis poinct de mal ; mais 
les Darioles (small tarts) d'Amiens sont meilleures a 
mon goust.' 

Louis XII. called many artists from Italy to France, 
amongst them Fra Giocondo, the Veronese architect, 
though it is difficult to trace his handiwork. The 
nobility of this age were nevertheless little addicted to 
either learning or the fine arts, and looked with severe 
contempt on the effeminateness of the Italians — an 
eft'eminateness apparently almost inseparable from a 
highly developed civilisation. Still they could not 
withstand the influence of Italian culture. The intro- 
duction of gunpowder and the use of heavy artillery 
further tended to revolutionise their habits. The 
heavy coats of mail became a source of danger rather 
than a protection ; the massive walls and fortifications of 
the feudal castles no longer availed against cannon shot. 

Cardinal George of Amboise was one of the most 
enlightened men of Louis xii.'s reign, and foremost 




CK-O-^^c^- ^O"'*'"^. 



CHATEAUX ON THE LOHiE 



203 



amongst the patrons of art. His chateau of Gaillon 
and the bishop's palace at Rouen, both now unfortu- 
nately destroyed, testified to his love for the Arts. In 
literature Rabelais was a powerful factor in changing 
the currents of thought, and breaking up tlie super- 
stitions of the dark ages. His writings are characteris- 
tic of the times — quaint and fantastic in language like 
some mediaeval castle, yet full of a humour and satire 
directed against the vices of the monks and the beliefs 
of his day which smack of the modern spirit. In his 
description of the Abbey of Thelema in Cargaiiiiia, 
Rabelais gives a graphic picture of an ideal chateau of 
the period : — 

' Le bastiment feut en figure exagoiie, en telle fa9on 
qu'a chascun angle estoit bastie une grosse tour ronde 
a la capacite de soixante pas en diametre et estoient 
toutes pareilles en grosseur et portraict. La riviere de 
Loire decouloit sus I'aspect de Septentrion. Le tout 
basty a six estaiges comprenant les caves soubz terre 
pour ung. Le second estoit voulte a la forme d'une 
ansa de pannier. Le reste estoit embrunche de guy 
de Flandres a forme de culs de lampe. Le dessus 
couvert d'ardoise fine avec I'endoussure de plomb a 
figures de petits manequins et animaulx bien assortis et 
dores avecq les goutieres qui issoient hors la muraille : 
entre les croisees, painctes en figure diagonale d'or 
et azur, jusques en terre, oil finissoient en grands 
eschenaulx qui conduisoient en la riviere pair dessoubz 
le logis. Ledict bastiment estoit cent fois plus magni- 
fique que n'est Bonivet, ne Chambourg ne Chantilly : 
Car en icelluy estoient iieuf mille trois cents trente et 
deux chambres, chascuue garnie d'arrlere-chambre, 
cabinet garderobbe, chapelle et issue en une grande 
salle. Entre chascune tour au millieu dudict corps de 
logis estoit une vis brisee dedans icelluy niesme corps de 
laquelle les marches estoient part de phorphyre, part 








'^\i 



-6fi 



,S- 




C<^(U. 



CM.o^<Lo^<. rDlQ<<i 



de pierre de Numidicque, part de marbre Serpentin : 
longues de 22 pieds. En chascun repos estoient 
deux beaulx arceaulx d'anticque par lesquels estoit 
receue la clarte ; et par iceulx on entroit en ung 
cabinet faict a claire-voie de largeur de ladicte vis, et 
montoit jusques au dessus la couverture, et la finoit en 
pavillion. Par icelle vis on entroit de chascun coste 
en une grande salle et des salles es chambres au milieu 
estoit une merveilleuse vis, de laquelle I'entree estoit 
par le dehors du logis en ung arceau large de six toises 
(fathoms). Icelle estoit faicte en telle symmetrie et 
capacite que six honimes d'armes la lance sus la cuisse 
pouvoient de front ensemble monter jusques au dessus 
de tout le bastiment,' etc. etc. 

In this description one cannot fail to recognise some 
of the chief characteristics of the various chateaux, — 
the staircase and four great halls of Chanibord, the 
staircases at Amboise and elsewhere. 

Under Francois i. the Renaissance attained its fullest 
glory. Handsome in person, and chivalrous, Fran9ois i. 
was a true type of the old knight : at the same time he 
led the van of the new life which was developing. 
Filled with a love for art and learning, he surrounded 
himself with the great men of his day. Painters and 
poets, learned doctors and physicians basked in the 
sunshine of his favour. Leonardo da Vinci found in 
him a generous patron ; Andrea del Sarto might have 
been equally fortunate had he not betrayed the king's 
confidence. 

Rosso and Priinaticcio worked for him at Fontaine- 



204 



THE SCOITISH ART REVIEW 



bleau ; Benvenuto Cellini wrought in metal to his 
orders. He caused numerous casts to be made from 
the antique, bought pictures by Raphael and other 
great masters, and Titian painted his portrait, now in 
the Louvre. Architecture, however, seems to have 
been his favourite art, to judge from the numerous 
chateaux still connected with his name, though many 
have perished, and ^ve readily acquiesce in the testi- 



Italian workmen were employed in the ornamental 
parts, in plasterwork for ceilings, mui-al paintings and 
decorations, sculpture, and carving. Many of the 
arabesques are of undoubted Italian workmanship. 
Yet the conception of the whole, the planning, and 
the manner in which the various parts are distributed, 
and essentially Gothic features are adapted and incor- 
porated with the new, can hardly be attributed to any 







niony of du Cerceau ' que le Roy Francois i. estoit 
raerveilleusement adonne apres les bastiments.' 

In spite of the numerous Italian artists introduced into 
the country the Renaissance architecture of France is 
essentially French. The absence of any mention of 
Italian architects in contemporary reco)'ds is noticeable, 
and I think there can be little doubt that the build- 
ings were, in the main, the work of native artists; 
this is borne out too by examination of the buildings 
themselves. 



but native workmen. In the wealth of fancy and 
richness of detail displayed we find again the love 
of variety and endless change in wliicli the mediaeval 
craftsmen delighted, and the wonderful technical 
skill developed by the exuberant life of the late 
Gothic readily seized upon, mastered, and assimilated 
the new forms. It is interesting to note that in the 
accounts of the Chateau Gaillon mention is made of a 
certain maitre Pierre Delorme who understood 'faire a 
I'antique et a la mode fran9aise.' Perhaps if master 



206 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 







Pierre Delorme had understood in addition the 
numerous styles which the modern architect is sup- 
posed to master, his work would have been less 
interesting and worthy of study. Let us now briefly 
turn to the buildings themselves. 

The Chateau of Blois was the favourite residence of 
the Kings of France, and as it exists at present belongs 
to several periods, the oldest portion being the great 
Salle d'Etats, and dating from the time of Saint Louis. 
It is divided into two aisles by an ai'cade, and effects the 
junction between the work of Louis .\ii. and Fran9ois i. 
The work of the former forms the east wing of the 
chateau, and contains the niiiin entrance into the 



courtyard. It is still almost entirely in the Gothic style. 
Renaissance influence being traceable only in one or 
two minor details, and in the arcade next the court- 
yard. The double doorway is a masterpiece of design 
and execution, full of dignity, and exceedingly rich in 
detail. The equestrian statue is a modern but excel- 
lent restoration. This double doorway, a large one 
and a small one for foot passengers, is an interesting- 
feature frequently met with ; examples of it are found 
at Chaumont, Hotel de Cluny, Paris, the ducal palace 
at Nancy, and elsewhere. The Chateau Chaumont, 
some miles from Blois, situated on an eminence over- 
looking the river, and commanding beautiful views 
from its terraces, belongs to this period. The massive 
machicolated towers which flank the angles, and the 
two towers commanding the drawbridge and gateway, 
give this chateau the character of a medi33val fortress ; 
yet it is such only in outward appearance, and it seems 
as if the nobles who built it had desired to retain the 
semblance of their feudal power though the reality 
had slipped away for ever. 

The interior is arranged to suit more advanced re- 
quirements ; large windows adjoin the courtyard, 
which is open on the fourth side. The rooms still 
contain the old furniture and beautiful tapestries from 
Arras. The chapel is also very interesting — carried 
out in the late Gothic style, and contains a carved 
stone pillar very like the Prentice Pillar at Rosslyn. 
There is also a fine well in the courtyard quite 
Venetian in feeling. 

Chateau Amboise dates also in the main from this 
period, though some additions were made by Fran9ois i. 
The great towers, which form so conspicuous a 
feature, are the work of Charles viii., and contain stair- 
cases constructed without steps, in the form of an 
inclined plane winding round an open pierced newel. 
The internal diameter of the staircase is about 60 feet, 
and it would be an easy matter to reach the ramparts 
of the chateau on horseback from the town below. 
It seems probable that Charles had in mind Giotto's 
Campanile at Florence, which is ascended in a similar 
manner. The great Campanile on the Piazza San Mai-co 
at Venice also occurs to one. A small late Gothic 
chapel, dedicated to St. Hubert, stands in the garden. 
It was built by Charles for Anne de Bretagne, and is-an 
exquisite piece of work. Like a gem it crowns a solid 
basement of masonry which rises from the rocks below 
to the castle level. It would be difficult to find a 
better illustration of the value of plain wall surface, 
seldom properly appreciated or understood, especially 
by the general public. One often hears the shallow 
remark (criticism it cannot be called), ' How plain and 
ugly ! ' as if the former implied the latter. The value 
of plain wall surface cannot be too strongly insisted 
upon ; it gives to a building the look of strength and 
repose, and serves as a foil to the decorative features, 
which thus produce their full effect. Leonardo da 
Vinci lies buried in this little chapel. The lover of 
the picturesque will find many quaint old corners in 



CHATEAUX ON THE LOIRE 



207 



the town which lies at the foot of the chateau. An 
old gateway of the fifteenth century, and the Church 
of Saint Denis, dating from the twelfth, will repay 
careful inspection. 

But to return to Blois. The work of Francois i., 
which forms the north wing of the chateau, must rank 
amongst the finest creations of the early Renaissance, 
more especially the fa9ade next the courtyard. Its 
chief glory is the staircase ; but how describe it ? 
Words seem powerless to convey a proper idea of this 
exquisite creation of architectural art, carried out with 
a unique wealth of ornamental detail and sculpture. 
Octagonal in form, it projects into the courtyard, still 
following mediaeval tradition ; eight massive piers form 
the main structure, and tliese are connected by flat 
raking arches and open balustrades. Most artistic use 
is made of various heraldic emblems, such as the well- 
known salamander, the ermine of Anne de Bretagne. 
The initial letters of Fran9ois and Claude his wife are 
wrought into the balustrading, and delicate arabesques 
decorate the panels of the piers and newel. The 
north fa9ade, though more sober in detail, is not less 
effective as a piece of architectural design. Especially 
good are the oriel windows and balconies, supported 
and corbelled out on massive triangular buttresses, 
which seem to grow from the solid rock below. The 
most interesting features of the interior are the fine 
chimney-pieces in carved stone, and richly decorated 
in colour. They have all been restored, in fact the 
whole chateau is undergoing careful restoration at the 
hands of M. Dublain, and this detracts in a great 
measure from the interest generally attaching to old 
work. 

After contemplating work of the kind just described, 
one turns with disgust from the work of Mansard, to 
make room for whose monstrosity a beautiful portion 
of the old chateau was destroyed. Even as late as 
1793 plans were prepared for removing and rebuilding 
what is still left. Fortunately the art world was 
spared this piece of Vandalism. The picturesque town 
of Blois still retains many fine old bits. The Hotel 
dAlluy, built by Floriment Roberti, the minister of 
Louis xn., is specially interesting. The spandrils of the 
arcade in the courtyard are filled with a series of terra- 
cotta medallions representing the Roman emperors. 
They are of undoubted Italian workmanship. 

About eight miles from Blois, in the midst of a 
forest, lies the Chateau Chambord. It must have 
been a strange caprice that caused Francois i. to erect 
such a vast palace in such a solitude. Seen from a 
distance it raises hopes destined to be unfulfilled ; on 
nearer approach one discovers that the greater intei'ests 
have been sacrificed to the less, that the huge towers 
with their thin pilaster decoration are poor and 
bald, and this becomes more apparent as the eye 
passes upward and dwells on the roofs broken up by 
many dormers of fantastic outline and a veritable 
forest of chimneys — the whole efl^ect, in fact, is chaotic. 
On examination it is found that the detail, though full 




-i,, — .vx- 



of a certain rich vigour, is coarse and exaggerated 
compai-ed with that of Blois, and that what from a 
distance looked like marble panels are only slates 
nailed on. The general masses of the plan are still 
medifeval in their disposition, even to the incor- 
poration of the great ' donjon ' or central keep ; the 
internal arrangements, however, are adapted to the 
social requirements of the times, the towers at each 
story being divided into a separate suite of apartments, 
generally consisting of two large rooms, a cabinet, a 
garderobe, and a small staircase. Perhaps the most 
interesting feature here is the main staircase, placed 
at the junction of four great halls occupying the 
main portion of the central tower. It is in reality 
a double staircase, one passing over the other, and 
both winding round a central newel which is pierced 
with small openings. It is thus possible to pass up 
and down the staircase without meeting. Externally 
the staircase is emphasised by a large lantern crowned 
with a huge fleur de lys. 

Recent research has brought to light the name of 
the architect of Chambord : the notice in the old docu- 
ment runs, ' Pierre Nepveu Maistre de I'ceuvre de ma- 
9onnerie du bastiment du chastel de Chambord 1526.' 

Chateau Chenonceaux was commenced in 1515, a 
little earlier than Chambord, by Thomas Bovier. Chan- 



208 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



cellor of the Normandy exchequer, whose motto, ' S'il 
vient a point me sauvicudra,' is still seen on portions 
of the work. Built across the river Cher, whose waters 
flow round about and beneath it, surrounded by fine 
trees, and delightfully situated, it is a charming and 
characteristic example of the early Renaissance, with its 
circular turrets corbelled out at the angles, its steep 
roofs and its dormer windows. Internally the building 
is divided throughout its length by a wide vaulted cor- 
ridor, from which the various apartments are entered, 
an arrangement which is kept up on every story. The 
main staircase is withdrawn into the interior of the 
house, no longer forming an external projection, but 
carried up in straight flights after the Italian manner. 
A ribbed barrel vault forms the ceiling, and carries the 
flight above, and the detail throughout is excellent. 
On the teiTace in front stands a little circular tower, 
quite isolated, and now the home of the concierge. 
It groups admirably with the general composition, and 
has a fine doorway with elegant and refined detail. 

Chenonceaux, like so many other chateaux, is at 
present under restoration, which in France, as else- 
where, may frequently be regarded as a doubtful 
benefit. The work is apt to be done too thoroughly : 
wherever a stone shows the slightest decay it is ruth- 
lessly cut out and replaced. All the old landmaiks of 
time are swept away. In many cases the mouldings 
and detail seem to be incorrectly reproduced, so that 
where no traces of the old remain with which to com- 
pare the restored poi-tions, a suspicion arises that 
perhaps after all this is not what it was original!}', and 
one is inclined to ask. Would it not be better, where- 
ever possible, to permit each one to interpret the work 
for himself, rather than remove it for ever beyond 
that realm of speculation which it is one of the 
greatest charms of an old building to suggest ? 

Azay le Rideau in many ways resembles Chenon- 
ceaux, and was commenced nearly at the same time, 
namely in 1 520. It also is surrounded by water, being 
built on a small island in the river Ledre, a tributary 
of the Loire. Its plan is in the form of the letter L ; 
the angles are emphasised by the usual round towers, 
ci'owned with steep conical roofs, which are terminated 
by elegant lead finials in the form of animals, man- 
nikins, and other quaint devices. Much of the detail 
is excellent, the mouldings of stringcourses and cor- 
bellings very refined. The architectural treatment 
of the southern facade is particularly happy. It is 
interesting also to note as a feature the retention of 
the machicolations ; and though their raison d'etre has 



disappeared, we would not miss them, — without their 
heavy corbel course much of the general good effect 
produced would be gone. 

Azay has as yet been little restored. The present 
owner is the Marquis de Brencourt, an art-loving 
gentleman, by whose courtesy one is permitted to 
examine the interior, which contains much beautiful 
old furniture, fine tapestries, and pictures. 

Chateaudun, on the river Loir, though less frequently 
visited than those already mentioned, is yet one of the 
most interesting old castles. It was practically con- 
verted into a ruin by the Germans in 1S70, and has 
not yet been restored. A liberal poin-boire will free 
one from the guide's companionship and chatter, and 
secure the liberty to roam over the palace at one's 
own sweet will — a i-are privilege. 

Chateaudun has two fine staircases, one belonging 
to the Gothic period, the other to the Renaissance ; 
the latter, in beauty and richness of detail, ranks 
second only to that of Blois. Placed within the build- 
ing, it is spiral in form, the steps radiating round a large 
panelled newel, decorated with exquisite arabesques. 
Externally each story is emphasised by open arcaded 
balconies, from which access is gained to the apart- 
ments. I might describe the i-emainder of this chfiteau, 
the great halls, the prison and oubliettes, the machico- 
lations, the chapel with a fresco by an Italian monk, 
and discovered underneath the whitewash by Viollet le 
Due, but space forbids my entering into further detail. 
I have dealt chiefly with the Chateaux of the 
Renaissance, and indeed with only a few of these, but 
the interest of the district is by no means confined to 
them. Numerous beautiful examples of architectural 
art will be found in the various towns. Orleans has 
many quaint old houses which must be sought for in the 
narrow streets, and which are not pointed out in the 
guide-books. Blois I have already mentioned, Loches 
and Chinon, too, are full of interest. As one wanders 
through their quaint streets midst picturesque houses, 
with steep pitched roofs and turrets, one seems trans- 
ported to the fifteenth centurj', and might fancy one's- 
self treading some mediaeval city. 

Fine examples of church architecture are not 
wanting, such as the beautiful Gothic church of St. 
Nicolas at Blois, and the Renaissance tower of the 
Cathedral, and the Cloches St. Antoine at Loches, and, 
last and not least, must be mentioned the glorious 
towers of Tours Cathedral, which exemplifj' in the 
happiest manner the transition from the Gothic to 
the Renaissance. Frank W. Simon. 




MUNICIPAL ENCOURAGEMENT OF ART IN PARIS 



209 



MUNICIPAL ENCOURAGEMENT OF ART IN PARIS. 



THE official encouvajjement given in France to art 
and artists is doubtless an important factor in 
the development of the natural artistic taste of the 
people. The Ecole des Beaux-Arts, the Conservatoire, 
the Villa Medicis at Rome, the Gobelins, and the Sevres 
china manufactory are not positively hotbeds of national 
genius, — in fact, many now celebrated French artists 
have treated with disdain the official instruction ■ as 
professed at the above-named schools of art ; neverthe- 
less they are useful institutions, they help to maintain 
a certain classical art level, and pupils who attend the 
classes at the Beaux-Arts or the Conservatoire acquire 
the first principles of the technical side of art, without 
which even self-inspired genius can never attain per- 
fection. For instance, at the Beaux-Arts they learn 
to draw correctly, and, as Ingres said, ' Le dessin c'esl 
la prohite de I' art.' 

The Paris Municipal Council, though a body essen- 
tially political in its tendencies, does not remain indif- 
ferent to the progress and development of art, especially 
its decorative branch ; as a proof of this, I may mention 
the exterior and interior decoration of the new Hotel 
de Ville, the new Mairies, the beautiful statuary to be 
seen in the public gardens and parks of the city. 

At the time of the last Exhibition, in 1878, the 
Municipal Council allotted an annual grant of 300,000 
francs (£12,000) to the Fine Arts Department, but, 
owing to financial pressure, this was reduced to £8000 
in 1885. This is apparently a small sum considering 
the important part played by art in the beautifying of 
an essentially show city such as Paris ; but the money 
is spent with great discernment, and it must be re- 
membered that the opportunity thus offered to rising 
artists of making a name for themselves, and obtaining 
public honours, is in itself almost a sufficient reward. 
The public competitive exhibitions {concoiirs), the 
purchases, and the orders given by the Municipality, 
have continued to play an important part in the 
Parisian art movement. For instance, since 1878 there 
have been eleven concoiirs for painting and seven for 
sculpture, which have offered dawning talent oppor- 
tunities of revealing itself under the most varied and 
favourable circumstances. The decoi-ation of the 
Hotel de Ville, and that of the new Sorbonne, inaugu- 
rated with great civic pomp last August, have given rise 
to orders for artistic work on a large scale. In the 
case of the Sorbonne half will be done at the expense 
of the State, the other half at the expense of the city 
of Paris, and a special credit has been voted for the 
purpose. The decoration of the Sorbonne is intrusted 
to artists such as Falguiere (just promoted Grand 
Cross of the Legion of Honour), Chapu, Delaplanche, 
Delhomme, Mercie, Puvis de Chavannes, Benjamin 
Constant, Chartran, and Francois Flameng. Not a 
single Salon has passed without the Municipal Council 

VOL. IT. 



having made important purchases of sculpture for the 
ornamentation of the public gardens or municipal 
buildings. The most beautiful of these, due to the 
chisels of Barrias, Gauthier, Guillaume, Mercie, and 
other talented artists, have been temporarily removed 
from the Champs Elysees, Luxembourg, and Pare 
Monceau to decorate the gardens of the Great Ex- 
hibition. 

The steady growth of republican institutions m 
France has been attended by the gradual development 
among the Municipalities of large towns of a strong 
feeling of their own importance as governing bodies. 
This feeling is most apparent in the Paris Municipal 
Council, an essentially democratic body. Every oppor- 
tunity is seized to impress on the popular mind the 
majesty of civic law, and the solemnity of all the civic 
acts of a citizen's life. The Hotel de Ville is to 
become the heart of the city, while the twenty district 
Mairies, and the district Ecoles communales, are to be 
the arteries which will spread throughout the popula- 
tion the benefits of municipal government. The 
Mairie of each arrondissement becomes a Civic Temple 
for the celebration of the various legal ceremonies and 
acts of the citizen's life from the day of his birth until 
the day of his death. It must be remembered that 
one important incident of most men's and women's 
lives necessarily takes place at the Mairie ; for the 
French law requires marriage to be solemnised — at 
least in its civil aspect — at the Mairie, after which 
ceremony the parties go off, or do not go off, to church 
for the religious ceremony. But when the ceremony 
was performed in a bare public office, the whole busi- 
ness contrasted very unfavourably, in the bride's eyes 
at least, with the ceremony at the church ; so the 
Paris Municipality, in its campaign against the power 
of the clergy, resolved that the civil marriage should 
be made as attractive as possible. For rich people it 
did not matter, but for the working classes, whose 
means do not allow them to obtain the full choral 
service and other expensive luxuries of the parish 
church, this dignity of the civil marriage has been 
very pleasant. Married in a splendid hall, decorated 
with noble works of art, the ceremony performed as 
impressively as possible, the worthy proletaire now 
contents himself with civil marriage, and his bride is 
consoled for the loss of the church marriage by the 
splendour of the hall in which she stood befgjre 
' Monsieur le Maire ' in his tricolor sash, to say nothing 
of the cash saved by the single rite. As a conse- 
quence of this policy the Mairies which have been 
built of recent years are handsome buildings, elegant, 
and artistically decorated. The salle des manages, which 
also serves as a grand reception-room, has in every 
case been handsomely decorated by artists of renown 
and talent, who have portrayed under an idealised and 

2d 



210 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



symbolical form the various phases and acts of civic 
life. A selection from the list of concours of painting 
and sculpture which have taken place since 1878 will 
convey the best idea of what has been done in this 
direction : — 

1879- — Competition for the erection at the Rond- 
Point of Courbevoie of an allegorical monument of the 
Defence of Paris in 1870. Verdict in favour of M. 
Barrias' model. 

Competition forthe artistic decoration of the Mairies of 
the II. XII. XIII. XIV. Arrondissementsandof the Com- 
munal Schools, rue Chateau Landon and rue Dombasle. 
Honours awarded to Messieurs Moreau de Tours, 
Thirion, Gervex, and Blanchon, Baudoin, and Didier. 

Competition for the execution of a standard bust of 
the Republic, copies of it to be made for the decoration 
of schools, municipal offices, etc. ; also of a medal 
representing on one side the effigy of the Republic, on 
the other that of the city of Paris. 

1882. — Competition for the decoration of the salle 
des manages of the Mairie of St. Maur. Winner : M. 
Baudoin. 

Competition for the erection in the square of the 
Hotel de Ville of an equestrian statue of Etienne 
Marcel. The winner, M. Idrac, died before the work 
was finished, M. Marquestre finished it with the con- 
sent of his brother artist's family. 

Space will not allow of my mentioning all the 
concours up to the present day, but they have been 
numerous and generally successful. Besides these 
concoars, the Administration of the city have had 
numerous orders executed in painting and sculpture, 
besides medals, etchings, etc. For instance, the oisemhle 
of the statuary work of the new Hotel de Ville repre- 
sents, up to the end of last year, a total outlay of £62,000. 
With regard to the pictorial decoration of the Hotel de 
Ville not yet executed, the subject has been studied by 
a special artistic committee whose decision has been 
approved by the Municipal Council. The project entails 
an expenditure of i'l 00,000, payable in seven annual 
allotments, and ninety-two artists have already received 
orders. Certain parts of this extensive work are to be 
competed for, so as to give all artists an opportunity of 
distinguishing themselves. 



For the technical supervision of those orders which 
require the frequent inspection of competent j udges, 
the Administration has obtained the assistance of an 
administrative Fine Arts Committee, composed of 
eminent painters, sculptors, architects, and engravers. 
Thanks to the disinterested assistance of these gentle- 
men, and the eminent services of M. Armand Renaud, 
the Inspector-General of Fine Arts at the Prefecture 
of the Seine, the Administration is able to judge of 
the artistic value of their purchases and the correct 
execution of its orders. Nor is municipal patronage 
confined to the arts of form. Music has also been 
encouraged bj' a series of triennial competitions, for 
which a sum of ^HJ'O is granted to defray the expenses 
of a public performance of the work selected by the jury. 
The recenlthree performances of Mademoiselle Holmes' 
Ode Triumphale are said to have cost the municipal 
fund £12,000. The municipal patronage of the drama 
has also been earnest, though scarcely so successful. 

The Municipal Museum at the Hotel Carnavalet 
(the old historical residence of Madame de Sevigne) 
and its surroundings is one of the most interesting 
works carried out of late years by the Municipal 
Council. Tiie collection of relics of old Paris, from the 
earliest times down to the present day, the gallery of 
historical portraits, pictures, plans, and numerous other 
curiosities, the library, which contains almost everything 
that has been written or printed about Paris, not to 
speak of the architectural restoration of Madame de 
Sevigne's mansion, form a centre of artistic, antiquarian, 
and literary attraction of the deepest interest, not only 
for the student, but also for the everyday tourist. 

There are also municipal schools of art applied to 
industry, and other like institutions, but space is limited, 
and I cannot enter into further details. I may have 
the opportunity of dealing with the above subject 
more fully at the Art Congress next year. However, 
it will be seen by the above brief sketch that the 
Parisian Municipality has done much, and is striving 
to do still moi-e, to encourage art and the development 
of art culture among the people, and, at the same time, 
adding daily to the beauties of this splendid city. 

C. Nicholson. 

Taris, Oi-tolier 18S9. 



ART FOR ART'S SAKE —A CONTRAST. 



AMID the vague tumult of conflicting voices of art 
criticism, which to those outside the a?sthetic 
forum often appears a mere inarticulate and irrational 
din, it may be noted as a fact of some significance that 
the noise of controversy regarding ' art for art's sake ' 
has hitherto scarcely penetrated within the shrine of 
music. Other disputes are indeed heard there ; but 
she, the youngest of the arts, is yet hedged about with 
a divinity; her votaries have not sacrilegiously pro- 
posed to dethrone her and set her to the duties of a 



handmaiden. No authority has proclaimed to music, 
on the one hand, that one of her chief objects is to 
'perfect men's ethical state'; or, on the other, that 
she ' did her most sincere and surest work undisturbed 
by any moral ambition.' Musical wars have waged 
with reference to form rather than aim ; the furthest 
departure from purely musical principle advocated by 
Wagner, the most polemic of musicians, is the substi- 
tution of poetic for musical ideas as the formative 
element in composition, thus exemplifying the tend- 



'ART FOK ARTS SAKE'— A CONTRAST 



gn 



ency^ as Mr. Pater has expressed it, of one art to 
assimilate its mode of expression to that of others. 
Possibly, too, this is only a consequence of the com- 
promise necessarily involved in that combination of 
the different arts which is one of the leading features 
of his music dramas. But the musician has not 
hitherto been asked to go outside of art for the in- 
spiration of his motives or the aim of his work ; nor 
would even the advocates of ' absolute music ' uphold 
the opposite claim, that his art should be altogether 
self-contained and unconnected with aught beyond. 
And the reason for this significant silence of musical 
criticism is probably not far to seek, if we look from 
its literature to the art itself. 

In painting, as in religion, we are divided into 
denominations ; instead of one catholic faith, we have, 
at least, two opposing parties, each striving by its 
excess in one direction to counteract the defect of the 
other. We have seen pictures, from Hogarth's to 
Holman Hunt's and Noel Paton's, admittedly designed 
by the artists to 'point a moral,' and while pointing 
their moral with little practical effect, but slenderly 
possessed of the more peculiarly artistic excellences; 
others we have seen — or preferably have only heard of 
— whose main achievement is the indulgence of a 
gross and unbridled imagination ; others, again, whose 
claim to attention lies almost solely in their jjhoto- 
graphic realism ; and, as a natural consequence, we 
have seen a revulsion to purely decorative art, where 
expression of inward feeling or thought is, so far as 
may be when the human form is introduced, entirely 
absent. But, turning to the sister art, we find that 
with little exception its course has happily avoided 
either extreme. Consciously or unconsciously doing 
their work, primarily for the delight in doing it, the 
free, ever freshly renewed delight in the exercise of 
the creative faculty, composers have with one consent 
been careful always that their music be pre-eminently 
musical. But along with this undefinable, ethereal 
beauty of pure sound, they as constantly have inter- 
fused another, possibly a higher, element, stretching 
out to something outside and above itself, in virtue of 
which music becomes a language for the conveyance 
of idea, quivering with lights and shadows cast from 
the world without, whether of nature or the nearer 
i-egion of the feehngs ; pregnant with suggestions of 
scene or embodiments of emotion. In all the works 
hitherto accepted as great in musical art, these two 
elements, which may be distinguished as the artistic 
and the expressive, will be found united, though in 
various proportion. In such works as the fugues of 
Bach, it may be advanced, we have music which is 
more abstract than the most abstract of conventional 
decorative art ; for music, in its own nature, has less 
of material, is less dependent on the external, while 
in the work of the painter, ' art for art's sake,' like the 
hypothetic ammonium of the chemist, nowhere exists 
uncombiued ; the imitative or utilitarian motive can 
always be more or less detected along with it. Even 



in a Bach fugue, however, we may find expressiveness ; 
originally a vocal form, it is constantly suggestive of 
speech. At the Royal Academy each of the ' forty- 
eight ' used to be known by an ap])ropriate phrase, 
going as 'words' to its subject. And the most out- 
standing feature of the form itself, the successive 
entries of the parts with the same theme, to a large 
extent owes its grandeur of effect to its suggestion of 
the unity in multitude of a many-voiced throng whose 
utterance is inspired by a common sentiment. Beet- 
hoven, especially, is the master in whose works the 
two elements of art and exjiression hold almost equal 
sway, though which was the primary, in his estimation, 
may be gathered from his opinion, expressed in one of 
his contrapuntal exercise books, that it was better for 
a composer to be commonplace than far-fetched in his 
ideas, or bombastic in the expression of them. And 
if we turn to Wagner, whose aim is pre-eminentlj' 
towards the dramatically expressive and the pictur- 
esque, whose music often swells into colossal waves of 
high-wrought emotion, and even essays the embodi- 
ment of philosophic thought, we find artistic controlling 
principle never wholly absent. His most strangely 
original harmonies can be shown to derive their 
development from previously recognised progressions; 
his themes have in themselves a musical charm, and 
his masterly devices of combination and variation of 
them have the highest interest from the point of view 
of advanced musical science. 

It would be difficult, even for one fully conversant 
with all the latest developments in the two arts, to 
pronounce with any confidence what direction their 
tendencies are likely to take ; at best only a judicious 
guess can be made. If, as it seems to the writer, the 
two arts are at present looking somewhat aside in 
opposite directions from the straight mid-track, an inter- 
change of experiences can scarcely fail to be of mutual 
benefit. It is at all events well occasionally to take 
one's bearings and know clearly where one stands. 
Is there not, then, in a good deal of contemporarj' 
painting, a disposition to exalt the artistic over the 
expressive ? Herein would seem to lie the gulf between 
us and the art of the Italian Renaissance. Distinct 
indications of this tendency may be pointed to in the 
Impressionist school, in whose pictures the human 
figure is introduced occasionally as a mei'e solid object, 
possessing ' values' much more than character; in the 
almost purely decorative art of Albert Moore or Burne 
Jones ; in the colour harmonies of Monticelli and the 
• arrangements ' of Whistler ; and not least in the wide- 
spread interest which has lately arisen in regard to 
Japanese art. The strength of its grip of common life 
and common nature, the all-engrossing interest of 
reality it excites without our painfully elaborated 
realism, and its perfect mastery of decorative efl^ect in 
colour and arrangement, have commanded admiration 
on all hands. And at the same time such work in the 
domain of the ideal as the finest productions of Watts 
has not met with the full recognition it merits ; while 



212 



THE SCOTl'ISH ART REVIEW 



the depths and heights of emotion scarcely any con- 
temporary artist even attempts to sound. Of scenes of 
common life we have enough and to spare ; but since 
Millet how very few give us much beside its common- 
ness ! The painter of 'Napoleon on board the 
Bellerophon ' lavishes his magnificent technique on a 
' Mariage de Convenance/ whose significance can 
scarcely be called profound, while with Millais his 
subjects as a rule are mere pegs to hang his art upon. 
We hear the principle advanced that subject counts 
tor nothing, manner of treatment for everything ; the 
imprint of the artist only, not of the man, is looked for 
in his creation ; and thus the artistic interest of a 
picture is made to exclude the human. Goethe's 
famous maxim, that ' the beautiful is higher than the 
good, for it includes it,' may cut two ways in its 
application. What of the work which, in its embodi- 
ment of beauty, excludes the good ? To 'sit as God, 
holding no form of creed, but contemplating all,' is a 
proud and high-sounding claim for art ; but may not 
the exclusive pursuit of ' art for art's sake ' be tending 
to isolate and divorce it from life, or from what gives 
life its most essential value and meaning — character ? 
Has not 'art for art's sake' the same ring of narrow- 
ness about it as ' Let the shoemaker stick to his last ' .'' 
Does it not lose sight of art's ' relations ' to what is 
outside it ? If art come to be regarded as only a sort 
of intellectual lotos-eating, a costly though not un- 
profitable fad, and its products be in their nature 
appreciable and attainable by a select number of the 
wealthy few alone, to what esteem will it be entitled ? 
Mere art is — mere art. 

In music, on the contrary, the most democratic and 
popular of the arts, the observable tendency seems to 
be quite in an opposite direction ; to have expression — 
artistic if possible, but at all events expression. 
Though even Professor Villiers Stanford cannot away 
with the conclusion of the second act of the Gutler- 
dammerimg, and the choruses in the Meisiersinger 
are possibly too realistic in their hubbub of confusion, 
Wagner himself has indeed as a rule preserved a musical 
basis in his practical work. The idea, even quite 
lately expressed in a daily paper, that any sort of 
' cacophony ' could have rejoiced his heart, must surely 
have arisen in part from the hearing of bad per- 
formances of some of his frequently very trying music. 
The first time I heard the Ride of the Valhijrie, 
played by a provincial orchestra, it seemed to resemble 
nothing so much as the sounds emitted by a steam saw; 
and I shall not forget the subsequent revelation of its 
real effect when rendered under Herr Richter. Still, 
Wagner's bias is strongly in the one direction ; indeed, 
one of the secrets of the popularity of his music is his 
wonderful power of making it suggest something else. 
And it is to be feared that his principle of the ' poetic 
idea' has been made the excuse for much painful 
music by his professed followers, who in their diving 
after profundity of meaning have sometimes altogether 
forgotten merely musical beauty or interest. So, too. 



with Berlioz ; though he frequently verges dangerously 
upon the boundary that divides music from mere sound, 
as in the Queen Mcib scherzo, he has scarcely over- 
stepped it. But we have him mainly to thank for the 
increasing demand for ' programme music,' which 
would seemingly assume that the function of music was 
to tell a story or paint a scene, and would overlook the 
means by which this is to be done, regardless whether 
it be artistic or otherwise. The realistic devices which 
find favour with some composers are on a par with the 
deceptive imitations of the Wiertz Gallery at Brussels, 
or the traditional fly which a spectator tried to dislodge 
from a bowl of milk in one of Berghem's pictures. 
The frequent seeking after the extraordinary, the 
bizarre, the strange, the striking, the supernatural, 
which we may notice in contemporary music, has a 
tendency away from purely musical art, which, no 
doubt, may co-exist with these interesting features, 
but is often quite overshadowed by them. The growing 
taste for pieces where such efl^ects prevail is no evidence 
of an increasing love of music ; the attention they 
attract may be quite factitious, and their musical claims 
7iU. Another aspect of the same tendency, to lose 
sight of art in the endeavour after expression, is 
exemplified in the professedly ' religious ' music of 
Gounod, whose object is apparently to impress the 
hearer into a devotional frame of mind. It is told that 
the late Professor Macfarren, having commenced, along 
with a pupil, to analyse the Rcdemplion, after a few 
lines gave it up as hopeless. It would seem that the 
composer, not content, with Father Haydn, to commence 
his representation of the Creation only with an 
'imitation' of chaos, must give us the genuine article 
itself. Then the monotonous recitatives, the wander- 
ings up and down in chromatic scales and harmonies, 
beginning anywhere, and leading nowhere, which are 
found in several places in the same work, have much 
the same relation to really artistic sacred music as the 
nasal drawl and uplifted eye, or the garment of sack- 
cloth of the devotee, have to real worth of character. 
This is said, however, without prejudice to the musical 
value of other fine parts of the woi-k. A similar com- 
plaint may be brought against many of the hymn tunes 
peculiar to revivalist movements, of which their com- 
posers vainly imagine that they possess a peculiarly 
religious expression and influence. The childlike is 
taken as the type of attitude desirable for the smger; 
but the impression produced by the music is too often 
merely that of the childish ; the broad difference 
between the simple and the trivial is lost sight of. 
The argument may also, but less gravely, be directed 
against the revival of the archaic Gregorian music so 
strongly advocated by the High Church school, on the 
ground, not so much of its intrinsic mei-it, as of its 
venerable age and orthodox sanction, or its supposed 
peculiar adaptability to congregational singing in unison. 
All such attempts to utilise music in the service of 
religion, which forget what is due to the art itself, and 
neglect to make sacred music always artistically worthy. 




■FOLLT. 



liy E Onslow Fohd, A H.i 



NEGRO SONGS 



213 



can be acceptable only to the musically uneducated, 
and are liable to the penalty of exciting a reaction not 
only against themselves, but also by association against 
the cause they so weakly support, whenever the truly 
admirable in music has arrived at popular apprecia- 
tion. Neither means nor end will in this case be 
sanctified. 

But after all, we have been glancing at aspects of 



the two arts which may be merely passing ones ; 
to-morrow may bring about their reversal. And at its 
best, how small an influence has criticism had on the 
development of art ! Mendelssohn wrote, ' Why do 
people talk so much about music, instead of writing 
really good music ? ' Is not this, miiUilis tiiulandis, the 
burden of Whistler's recent prophecy against the 
critics, in a nutshell ? 



NEGRO SONGS. 



WITHOUT perpetuating slavery as it existed, it 
would be impossible to perpetuate the round 
of song (sacred and secular) that for so many years was 
familiar to every ear throughout the Southern States 
of America. The characteristics of the negro race in 
the States are rapidly changing, the new privileges 
and responsibilities — the outcome of the abolition of 
slavery — are speedily making of the freedman a being 
totally different from the slave of former years ; and in 
nothing has this mental change been more unmistak- 
ably shown than in the rapid disuse of tlie class of 
songs, many of which were so exquisitely illustrative 
of their habits of thought. Many people imagine that 
negro minstrelsy, as we know it in this country, and 
the genuine slave songs of the Southern States are 
one ; but the error is a gross one, and beyond a purely 
artificial resemblance, largely due to burnt cork, and a 
style of costume that hovers midway between the 
Sambo of an amateur Christy Minstrel troupe and the 
driver of a Tennessee ox-cart, there is no resemblance. 
Two points in the clap-trap ditties that are palmed off 
upon a European public as genuine Ethiopian songs 
are sufficient to condemn, and to relegate them to the 
limbo of ' humbug ' : the one is the straining after 
vowel endings, the second, the employment of triple 
time. Of the first it may be said that no genuine 
negro song, composed by a negro slave, ever concluded 
with such words as ' Swanee,' ' Tennessee,' or ' Ohio ' 
(very lengthy) ; and the second is unknown, save with 
one exception, which is of Scotch extraction, in negro 
music. The steamboats on western and southern 
rivers were almost exclusively manned by crews of 
negro slaves in the old days, and even after the intro- 
duction of white labour, the vocation of fireman, 
most probably because the atmosphere in which the 
negro revelled was totally insupportable to the white 
man, was peculiarly the black's. Some large steamers 
carried a crew of fifty hands. From this wholesale 
employment of negro labour arose the river songs of the 
slaves, most of these having the same refi'ain, and the 
single lines of solo being marked by about as much sense 
as we find in the chanty of our British tar. In fact, 
these river songs were the chanties of the negro boat- 
men. The leader, mounted on the capstan, as tlie 
ship left or entered port, sang the solo from a scrap of 
newspaper, the rest of the crew joining lustily in 



chorus. The effect was absurd, as the composition 
was devoid of meaning, and the howl was the chief 
feature of it. The song which follows is an excellent 
specimen, so far as notes can convey an idea of these 
strange barbaric ditties. 

'I'M GWINE TO ALABAMY." 



SEE 



ip^i 



■i^- 



P3^ 



frfZT 



I 'm gwlne to A - la • bamy, 



ESfcg^i 



m 



Oh 






Mj 



-• — =1- 



^- 



For to see 



my mammy, 



=i:as>r 



*^B^i 



=i- 



^iS=33 



2«(/ Verse. 

' She went from Ole Virginny, Oh ! 
And I 'm her pickaninny, Ah ! ' 

3(/ Verse. 

' She lives on the Tombigljee, Oh ! 
I wish I had lier wid me, Ah ! ' 

4^/« Verse. 

' But I 'd like to see my mammy. Oh ! 
Who lives in Alabamy, Oh ! ' 

•^th Verse. 

' But I 'd like to see my mammy, Oh ! 
Wlio lives in Alabamy, Oh ! ' 

Anoth .r specimen has no title ; — 
STEAMBOAT SONG. 



«E^Bi^^Ei^Eigiii?£J 



What boat is that, my darling hon - ey ? Oh 

Chorus Solo. 



^Eil^^j^-g^li^^l 



oh ho, ho, Ah yah, yah - ah, She is the 

Choyics. 



f^I^^^^^^^^ 



'River Ruler ;' Yes, my honey! Ah a - a- a Yah a - ah ! 

Michael Row the Boat Ashore/ is one of the most 



214 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



genuine slave songs existing, and was a prime favourite 
with the darkie watermen. 

'MICHAEL ROW THE BOAT ASHORE.' 



JEKDAN'S MILLS. 



^^ 



1=7=: 



S^l^S^^^-^ 



Jerdan's mills a - grinding, Jerdan's 



I. Michael row de boat a - shore, Halle - lu - jah ! t/ 



hay; 



•F- 






^F^- 



Michael boat a gospel boat, Hal • le 



3=S 



^=. 



jah ! 



Occasionally some stirring incident of steamboat 
achievement, as the great race between the ' Shot- 
well ' and the ' Eclipse,' would wake the Ethiopian 
muse and inspire special pagans. But as a general rule 
the steamboat songs were tiresomely similar to the 
one just given. In the department of farm or planta- 
tion songs there is much of singular music and poetry (.') 
to be found. Some of them are peculiar to the har- 
vest-field, others belong exclusively to corn shuckings 
(not huskings), and sovne are consecrated to fireside 
games. Long ago, when the mowing machine and 
reaper were as yet unthought of, it w-as not uncommon 
to see in a Kentucky harvest-field fifteen or twenty 
' cradlers ' swinging their brawny arms in unison as 
they cut the ripened grain, and moving with the 
regulated cadence of the leader's song. The scene 
repeated the poet's picture of ancient oarsman and the 
chanter seated high above the rowers, keeping time 
with staff and voice, blending into one impulse the 
banks of the trireme. Eor such a song emphasis of 
rhythm was, of course, more important than words. 
Each mower kept his stroke and measured his stride 
by musical intervals. A very favourite song for these 
harvesting occasions commenced thus : — 

' RISE UP IN DUE TIME.' 







like the old ewe, Ba - a - a ! 

Both the following are favourite corn-gruiders' 
songs. Only the burden of ' Shock Along, John ' is 
remembered now ; it is peculiar to the northern sea- 
board Slave States. 

'SHOCK ALONG, JOHN." 

H5rq--= 






Shock along, John, shock along. 



i^m^^^m^^^^m 



Jerdan's mills a - grinding, Jerdan's a - hay. 

The following is a melancholy song used by the 
tired slave as he drives his cart homeward at even- 
tide : — 

'OH SU-ZANN!" 
y^ry sitno t'une. 






Suzann, Fare you well ! And ain't you mighty 



--1^- 



sor • ry ... To think I married you just last night, and gwine away 
Refrain. 



^^mmm^ 






in the morning? 



Suzan - na, 



fare you well ! 



The melancholy that tinges every negro's life 
asserts itself on these occasions, and the songs are sor- 
rowful pictures of slave life ; partings and separations, 
and death, all told in rude words, set to poor music, 
but ennobled with a pathos that grander lyrics and 
melodies might envy, and sung in tearfid minor tones 
to the hulking animals he is driving. 

Songs of gaiety, sung in company, cheered by the 
bright firelight, are in direct contrast to the last 
named. The day's work done, the appetite appeased, 
care is cast off, and the slave tells anecdotes and 
dances jigs, whilst some member of the party fiddles 
the tune of ' The Fifer's Son,' and the chorus is sung 
by all sorts and conditions of niggers, male and female, 
big and little, in stentorian tones. Sometimes the old 
jiatriarch of a plantation would delight the company 
with the famous '' Turkey-buzzard Jig,' or would treat 
them to the popular 'Send for the Barber,' 'We'll 
knock around the Kitchen till the Cook comes in,' or 
' The Noble Skewball,' which I give. 

'THE NOBLE SKEWBALL.' 



n 



3^^3EE^=iEE3: 



-• — •- 



i^ippa^ 



When the day was ap - p'inted for Skewball to 

-4^ 



-m — •- 






pppi^mi 



run, The horses were ready, the people did come- 




f=F=F 



^•=e: 



nil 



Some from old Vir 



and from Ten - nes- 



=3=3^ft^^^ 






Shock along, John, shock along. 



see, Some from Al 



ba - ma, and from every - where. 



MISS AUSTEN'S LOVERS 



215 



The efFect of negro slave hymns can hardly be 
overrated. Many desci-iptions of this portion of their 
songs have been given. Alternately agonised with 
fear and transported with bliss, these revival hymns 
are sung in a manner that only one word can accurately 
describe, and that word is J'ranticaUij. As a general 
rule, but few of these hymns were borrowed from our 
collections ; any that were, were sure to abound in 
bold imagery or striking expressions. Those composed 
by the negroes themselves were full of curious meta- 
phors ; for instance, in one the Christian was likened 
to a traveller by rail, the Lord Jesus Christ being the 
conductor, the brakesmen were the preachers, and the 
stations the gospel depots where stoppages were made 
to take up waiting converts, or replenish the engine 
with the water of life or the fuel of holy zeal. 

' The Old Ship of Zion ' has many versions, but one 
will suffice to show the style of the hymn. 'Oh, 
Wake the Nations' is another well-known revival 
song. 

'THE OLD SHIP OF ZION.' 



' Oh, wliat is the compass you 've got aboard the ship ? 

Oh, glory, halleloo ! 
The Bible is our compass, halleloo ! 
Oh, the Bible is our compass, halleloo ! ' 

'OH, WAKE THE NATIONS.' 



mM^m^im^^ 



Oh wake tlie nations under the ground ; oh halle, oh halle- 



:^zl=i'i^Ell^ji=^^^^ii^^l^1 



jiih ! 



Oh wake the 



nations 



under the ground ; 



oh halle. oh halle - hi - jah ! 

Here is another specimen : — 

'I CAN'T STAY BEHIND. 



iiHHigiSilgiii 



I can't stay behind, my Lord, I can't stay behind ! 



n -j^— — ^ -■ ■ „ " oenina, my jLora, l can t stay behind ' 

Zji. glZjrird^ ~C1 — _f^— {— _ , T , :r:p3Z] Dere's room enough, Room enough, Room enough in de 






's^^i^^-^^pmw^^^^ 



' Oh, what ship is that you are sailing aboard ? 
Oh, glory, halleloo ! 
'Tis the old ship o' Zion, halleloo ! 
'Tis the old ship of Zion, halleloo ! 

' Oh, what are the timbers for buildin' of the ship ? 
Oh, glory, halleloo ! 
She is made o' gospel timbers, halleloo ! 
She is made o' gospel timbers, halleloo ! 



heavens, my Lord, .Jf Room enough. Room enough, I can't stay behind. 

All slave songs are best suited to baritone voices. 
It is in chorus that the voices of negroes are heard to 
best advantage, and though keenly appreciative of 
melody, it is very rare to hear among them any 
attempt at harmony. The time of most of these 
tunes is |. Much swaying of the body and nodding 
of the head, and rhythmical movement of the hands, 
accompany the singing, which is always done with the 
greatest zest and spirit. L. A. S. 



MISS AUSTEN'S LOVERS. 



MISS AUSTEN'S LOVERS. Let us observe them 
for a little, for the race of lovers, properly so- 
called, is fast becoming e.xtinct in English fiction. 
We have platonic friends whose heaven is a philoso- 
phical tele-ii-icte. We have cosmopolitan atoms who 
play at cross purposes through the Continent of Europe 
for three volumes, and flutter apart for ever on the 
last page. We have morbid theologians who shatter 
their happiness on a disputed dogma. But Miss 
Austen's heroes and heroines are none of these un- 
satisfactory beings, but real good old English lovers 
who get introduced to each other at ball or rout at 
the beginning of vol. i, and work steadily and honestly 
through attraction, increasing interest, sudden mis- 



fortune, misery, hope deferred, hope abandoned, hope 
revived, and perfect bliss, until they are finally ushered 
out at the end of the third volume to the sound of 
their own wedding bells. All is satisfactory and 
straightforward from the time that the lady dons 
her sprigged muslin and calls for her chair, to the 
eventful moment when ' the bells rang and everybody 
smiled, and Henry and Catherine began their perfect 
hap])iness at the respective ages of twenty-six and 
eighteen.' 

There are none of the qualms of conscience and 
quixotic reflections and heart-communings of the more 
modern girls in fiction to complicate matters. As far 
as I remember, Elizabeth Bennet is the only one of 



ai6 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



Miss Austen's heroines who does not admire the 
gentleman she eventually marries from almost the 
first hour of meeting, and the title of the book tells 
us that this was ' Prejudice.' Indeed^ the heroes in 
Miss Austen's books have rather a too easy time of it. 
They are one and all such remarkably fine fellows, and 
the young women all show their keen perception of 
this so plainly that one is tempted to agree with Miss 
Thoi-jie when she says, ' I have no notion of treating 
men with such respect. Thai is the way to spoil 
them.' 

Miss Austen's lovers may be divided into two great 
classes, arranged respectively under the headings of 
' Sense ' and ' Sensibility.' To the first class belong all 
her stronger characters — Elizabeth, the sprightly and 
winsome ; Emma, the spoilt child and charming and 
clever woman ; Anne, the gentle yet spirited heroine 
of Persuasion ; and Elinor, the suffering but restrained 
embodiment of Sense. Of men we have Mr. Knightley, 
the courteous and considerate — he whom, methinks, 
most ladies of discrimination esteem as the most per- 
fect of non-heroic heroes — Mr. Darcy, Henry Tilney, 
and Edward Ferrars. In the class labelled Sensibility, 
we have Marianne, the sensitive and responsive Miss 
Dashwood ; and Catherine Morlaud, the fluttering and 
novel-reading little school-girl. Frank Churchill, Mr. 
Willoughby, and Mr. Wickham also come under this 
catalogue — attractive, pleasure - loving, and unprin- 
cipled lads — altogether wanting in the sterner quali- 
ties, but charming, and beloved by ' the ladies.' Then 
there is a third very varied and very admirable class 
of characters among Miss Austen's lovers — viz., those 
who cannot be termed heroes and heroines, those 
whose frivolity, inanity, or vulgarity debar them from 
this lofty position, but who occupy a not unimportant 
sphere in the story ; who love, or who at least woo ; who 
are often rejected by the real heroes and heroines, 
but who marry others more like-minded to themselves. 
To this class belong the Eltons ; the immortal, the 
incomparable, the unique Mr. Collins ; the Miss 
Steeles, Miss Thorpe, and numbers of others. 

I. The sensible heroes and heroines are of course 
jiar excellence the heroes and heroines of Miss Austen's 
books, for she values robust good sense as one of the 
highest gifts and graces. Her two most charming 
heroines are Elizabeth Bennet and Emma Woodhouse. 
They have so much sterling good sense, mingled with 
warm afl^ections, sprightly wit and stern self-respect. 
They are ladies every inch of them — clever, full of 
tact, gracious when pleased, a little thorny when put 
out, both far from saintly, but thoroughly wholesome, 
pleasant, well-bred women. They are feminine, too ; 
anxious to please, fond of their own sex, and perfectly 
capable, in their own eyes at least, of judging the 
other. They have their little trials no doubt, but 
these are trials of other people's making. They are 
not morbid, analytical, or retrospective, and their 
humour is so wholesome, and their imperfections so 
natural and lovable, that one feels from the outset 



that Fortune cannot refuse to shine at last upon such 
charming damsels. 

Elizabeth is the second daughter in a family of 
girls ; less beautiful than her elder sister Jane, but intel- 
lectually her superioi'. She has a clever and sarcastic 
father, a foolish and vulgar mother, and three idioti- 
cally silly younger sisters. She lives in the country 
(all Miss Austen's lovers do), and at a ball meets Mr. 
Darcy, the friend of her sister Jane's lover and subse- 
quent husband, Mr. Bingley. All lovers of Pride and 
Prejudice wiU remember the delightful little scene when 
Mr. Darcy is urged to select Elizabeth, who can over- 
hear the conversation, as his partner for the dance, 
and replies, ' She is tolerable, but not handsome enough 
to tempt me, and I am in no humour at present to 
give consequence to young ladies who are slighted by 
other men.' Mr. Lewes once said that Jane Austen 
was one of the writers ' with the nicest sense of means 
to an end ' that ever lived, and in nothing is this 
quality so well displayed as in her most fragmentary 
dialogues. In this one we have referred to how Eliza- 
beth and Mr. Darcy suddenly develop before us ! 
He — lordly, proud, and fastidious ; she — sitting qiiietly 
in the background, her eyes twinkling with amusement, 
by no means prepossessed by this sublime creatui'e, 
but enjoying the ludicrousness of the situation and the 
prospect of i-egaling her friends with a lively account 
of the little episode after the dance is ovei-. How Mr. 
Darcy's pride is overcome by Miss Bennet's charms, 
and how her prejudice is at last conquered by her 
lover's ardour, supported by the insolence of his aristo- 
cratic relatives which arouses her contradictory nature, 
must be read to be understood and admired. 

Emma, happy F^mraa, the beloved object of Mr. 
Knightley's courtly attentions, is like Elizabeth in her 
charms, but totally distinct from her in many ti-aits of 
character. She gives us the impression of a larger 
woman, both physically and intellectually. She lives 
alone with her father, a genial, kindly valetudinarian, 
and is the darling of his heart and the queen of the 
little society in which she moves. Every one admires 
her, adores her, looks up to her, save Mr. Knightley. 
From him she receives rebukes and reprimands. ' I 
have blamed you and lectured you,' he cries, dis- 
tractedly, when he proposes to her under the lilac 
trees, and you have borne it as no other woman in 
England would have borne it ! It was all very well 
for Mr. Knightley to praise Miss Woodhouse's forbear- 
ance at this point, but his rebukes and lectures had 
not been by any means always well received, and, 
indeed, in many cases had been totally disregarded. 
Emma, at the beginning of the story, takes to match- 
making (for others, that is to say, for no heroine ever 
desired matrimony less for herself than did she), 
and arranges a marriage between a protegee of her 
own — a sweet-tempered, brainless, little creature 
called Harriet Smith, and the rector of the parish, 
Mr. Elton. All goes well, and poor Harriet is ready 
to accept the oflfer of Mr. Elton's heart, when Emma 



MISS AUSTEN'S LOVERS 



217 



is ruthlessly aroused by having it laid at her own feet 
(in a chaise, on the way home from a dinner-party). 
Emma, in short, is occasionally as delightfully foolish 
as any self-willed girl of one-and-twenty can well be, 
but in spite of this she is a charming and natural 
woman, instinct with life and happiness, somewhat 
critical, hasty and severe, but at the bottom worth)' of 
even a Mr. Knightley, and what greater praise could 
be bestowed upon her ! 

II. But we must pass on now to the other class of 
Miss Austen's lovers. The two most vivid heroines in 
this division of our subject are Catherine Morland 
in Norlhatiger Abbey and Marianne Dashwood in 
Soise and Sensibilily. Catherine, perhaps, should 
hardly be included in this class, for her sensibility is 
that of a very young and inexperienced girl affected by 
new scenes, a fascinating young man, and a sensational 
novel, rather than that of a really highly strung and 
hyper-sensitive nature. Northangcr Abbey seems to 
be a gentle satire upon the then fashionable Mrs. 
Radcliffe type of novel. It is a novel which is per- 
petually proving itself to be nothing that a novel 
should be, and the introductoi-y pages are full of de- 
lightful humour as they describe all the orthodox 
situations and surroundings that were entirely want- 
ing to its unfortunate so-called heroine. Catherine 
had never nursed a canary-bird nor watered a rose- 
bush. She could neither play upon the spinet nor 
write sonnets. She had neither a cruel father nor an 
angelic mothei\ She was not beautiful, and she had 
never had a lover. However, Catherine at last goes 
upon a visit to Bath, and then, in addition to the 
happiness of spending her days at the pump-room and 
her evenings at the balls, she forms the acquaintance 
of a confidential female friend who instructs her in 
the fashions, the latest novel, and the tender passion. 
Who, having once read them, can ever forget the 
inimitable humour of many of the scenes in North- 
anger Abhcij ? The conversation between the two 
young lady friends in the pump-room ; the gratifying but 
subsequently annoying attentions of the horsey young 
man ; the invitation to the Abbey, and the prospective 
delight of the heroine's well-read mind in its gloomy 
corridors, vaulted chambers, haunted I'ooms, and family 
secrets are all described with the most delicious 
piquancy. 

Catherine is very young, very silly, very romantic ; 
but there are elements of sense in her character that 
lead us to hope that she may develop into a creditable 
and pi-osaic rector's wife. Indeed, we cannot doubt it 
when we consider the description of her sorrows one 
evening when she failed to meet Mr. Tilney at the 
ball. ' The progress of Catherine's unhappiness from 
the events of the evening was as follows. It appeared 
first in a general dissatisfaction with everybody about 
her while she remained in the rooms, which speedily 
brought on considerable weariness and a violent desire 
to go home. This, on arriving at Pulteney Street, 
took the direction of extraordinary hunger, and when 

VOL. II. 



that was appeased, changed into an earnest longing to 
be in bed : such was her extreme point of distress ! ' 

Mr. Tilney is a pleasant young man, younger, and 
not so commanding as either Mr. Darcy or Mr. 
Knightley ; and his affection for Catherine, we are led 
to understand, was prompted by gratitude for her 
very evident admiration for him ! This surely is not 
all that a lady of sensibility could desire ; but Miss 
Austen punishes her too romantically-disposed heroines 
by clipping their wings and limiting their flights of 
fancy. Marianne, the eager, the impulsive, the 
romantic, the ecstatic Miss Dashwood, next claims our 
attention. We see her marvelling at her sister's 
temei'ity in marrying a man who read Cowper aloud 
with ' so much composure,' ' such impenetrable calm- 
ness,' ■■ such dreadful indifference.' ' It would have 
broken ni)' heart had I loved him,' she cries, ' to hear 
him read with so little sensibility.' But the ardent 
maiden enjoys the supreme felicity of meeting an 
equally ardent youth whom we must suppose reads 
Cowper with the most consummate taste. Her happi- 
ness is as intense as it is brief; her lover proves faith- 
less ; her wounded sensibilities, after occasioning the 
greatest discomfort to her whole connection, slowly 
recovei', and Nemesis overtakes her in the form of an 
admirable husband of some five-and-thirty, over whose 
rheumatic pains and extraordinary and unmaiTiageable 
old age she had made merry in the opening chapters 
of the book. 

But we must not linger over the real heroes and 
heroines of Miss Austen's novels. Enough has already 
been said, I hope, to recall their charming naturalness 
and simple truthfulness. They are never heroic, the 
circumstances of their lives forbid it ; but neither on 
the other hand are they ever mock-heroic, strained, or 
unnatural. We cannot look for depths of feeling from 
young ladies nourished on the pages of Mrs. Radcliffe 
and Cowper ; and Jane Austen had no poetic ir>iagina- 
tion that could teach her to create a type of woman 
that did not then exist. She does not seek out the 
hidden beauties, or throw a golden veil over the grim 
realities of life. Lives unlike her own were sealed 
books to her, and pathos and passion have no place in 
her works. She has no enmity to any form of vice or 
oppression. She loves conventionality, and has never 
discovered that the world is full of cant and hypocrisy 
and wickedness. Happy woman ! she still dwells in 
the paradise of an English village where gossip is the 
only sin, and mild flirtation the only flagrant trans- 
gression. We are back in Arcadia as we read her 
books, although the gentlemen carry the gun instead 
of the crook, and the ladies prefer the spinet to the 
pastoral flute, and the trim flower-garden and neatly- 
clipped shrubberies surround them, instead of the 
meadows and the woodlands. But limited as Miss 
Austen may be, within the boundaries of her own 
sphere she is matchless. Her characters, simple 
though they be, possess a vividness and realism that 
make them absolutely distinct, not only from the 

2e 



ai8 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



creations of all other novelists, but from each other. 
We do not read about them only ; we see them, 
we know them, we recognise their little habits 
and tricks of manner and speech. And yet there 
is scarcely ever a description of a hero's or 
heroine's personal appearance, character, or tastes 
in all her books. Dialogue does it all, and this 
dialogue is perhaps the mo,st vivid and brilliant in 
English fiction. It is neither dramatic like George 
Eliot's nor emotional like Charlotte Bronte's, but it is 
the canvas upon which this 'painter of human charac- 
ter' limns her portraits. The faces, the gestures, the 
feelings, the motives of her men and women shine up 
through their words as the pebbles do through the 
clear waters of a brook. Read the dialogue between 
Catherine and Isabella Thorpe, or between Mrs. John 
Knightley and her father, or between Elizabeth and 
Lady Catherine, and see how incomparable is the 
result. And just because of Miss Austen's limitations 
must we render homage to the marvellous skill with 
which she distinguishes between characters that out- 
wardly are almost identical. The circumstances of 
their lives are very similar; the tales are played in 
country villages and manor-houses, and balls and quiet 
dinner-parties are the chief incidents. Yet there is no 
confusion ; every character stands forth distinctly — 
Elizabeth from Emma, Miss Thorpe from Miss Steele, 
Mr. Elton from Mr. Collins, Mrs. Bennet from Mrs. 
Jennings. Her coldly insipid women differ in the 
style of their coldness and insipidity, and her vulgar 
women in the e.xtent and direction of their vulgarity. 

And this brings us to the third division of Miss 
Austen's lovers, a division containing characters that 
could not possibly be omitted in any paper on her 
works. There have been greater writers than Miss 
Austen. We cannot place her beside Scott and Thack- 
eray, George Eliot and Charlotte Bronte, for passion 
and pathos and eloquence are wanting in her. But 
in one respect she outstrips any one of these four 
great novelists, and that is in her exquisitely humorous 
perception and description of vulgarity. She alone has 
succeeded in the delineation of this subtle and all-per- 
vading quality, and it is by her treatment of this that 
she has proved herself the most robust humorist of any 
of our women novelists. The ' Campaigner ' is herself 
vulgar caricature of vulgarity when we compare her 
tactics with Mrs. Bennet's maternal hopes and schemes ; 
and where in the whole range of fiction has the vulgar 
newly man-ied woman been pourtrayed in the full- 



blown insolence of her newly acquired superiority as in 
the person of Mrs. Elton ? We must never forget, too, 
that Miss Austen it was who created Mr. Collins, who 
made him write his deliciously absurd letter, and who 
brought him to Longbourn to atone for being the heir 
in entail by offering his hand to Miss Bennet. We 
know not which of those delightful creations we enjoy 
most, — Mrs. Elton pluming herself upon the barouche- 
landau of ' my sister Selina,' and the superior accom- 
modation of Maple Grove, or Mr. Collins, cumbrously 
polite, with interminable talk of his patroness. Lady 
Catherine de Bourgh, and her extreme condescension in 
allowing him to take a holiday now and again upon con- 
dition that he provided supply for his pulpit. Perhaps 
there is nothing in the whole range of fiction more 
delightfully amusing than the visit of Mr. Collins, ' this 
peace-loving gentleman,' to his uncle's house, his hasty 
wooing, his pompous proposal, his rapid transference 
of attentions, and last, but not least, the visit which 
Elizabeth pays to him and his bride, and her introduc- 
tion, under the proud rector's auspices, to his patroness 
and condescending friend. Lady Catherine de Bourgh. 
But tempting as are these lovers who live so vividly 
in Miss Austen's pages, we must have done. The 
men and women of fiction live for ever : unlike their 
real brothers and sisters, they are eternally young and 
beautiful. That this thought is altogether a happy 
one in the case of Dorotheas or Lucy Snowes we could 
hardly venture to assert ; but no such doubt assails us 
in regard to the heroes and heroines of Pride and 
Prejudice, Emma, or Northangcr Abbey. They know 
nothing of the weariness and exhaustion of life, the 
fading of hope, the slow wasting of faith. The fire of 
youth and gladness shines from their clear eyes, and 
the elasticity of gay spirits and robust, if not transcen- 
dent intellect, pervades their speech and actions. 
They may not form our ideals, but we could never 
wish for better friends. Charlotte Bronte compares 
these books scornfully to a ' carefully fenced, highly- 
cultivated garden ' ; but what, we ask, can be sweeter 
than an ancient English garden, with its sunny walls 
and pleasant walks, and beds full of old-fashioned 
fragrant flowers ? The open skies and wide horizons 
are wanting in Miss Austen's books. They are fenced 
about with conventionality and tradition ; but the sun- 
shine falls warmly upon her scenes and episodes, and 
her pages are full of quaint yet natural characters 
that blossom perennially in all their dignity, purity, 
and grace. Margabet Hill. 



TO A CUCKOO HEARD IN EARLY MORNING. 



I HEAR thine iterating voice in flight. 
Cuckoo, while every wood-bird's song is furled. 
To rise like thee ! To take my range of light, 

And spread unravished echoes through the world ! 

Michael Field. 



CHILDREN'S BOOKS AND THEIR ILLUSTRATORS: GEORGE CRUIKSHANK 219 

CHILDREN'S EOOKS AND THEIR ILLUSTRATORS: 
GEORGE CRUIKSHANK. 



AN artist who has been intrusted with the task of 
ilhistratiiig a child's book finds it harder than 
he supposed to bring himself down, as he thinks, to 
the level of the child's fancy. Artists of genius, as 
well as of talent, frequently shoot the arrows of their 
art far over the heads of the little ones for whom they 
ai-e catering. As an illustrator of children's books, 
in the truest and most lasting sense, George Cruik- 
shank had no rival. 

The presses of Aldus, the Elzevirs, and the Plantins 
never sent forth a classic more important than the 
Popular German Stories of the Brothers Grimm. The 
etchings contributed by Cruikshank ci-owned the work 
with perfection, for never were letterpress and illustra- 
tion more happily united. It is difficult to realise how 
much an author owes to the artist who illustrates his 
works. Admirable as the popular German stories are 
in themselves, we cannot estimate the value of the 
Brothers' debt to Cruikshank. The elves and the 
shoemakers and Rumpelstiltskin are better known 
than Roland and Maybird, Rosebud, or even Ash- 
puttel. There is not an illustration in the two volumes 
which is not in itself a complete and finished little 
picture. The rarity of the first edition of these 
volumes, which came out in 1823 and 1826 respec- 
tively, puts them out of the reach of all but the very 
few. Excellent copies, however, may be obtained at 
any bookseller's. The child who has been brought up 
on these tales never forgets the Prince in the 'Story of 
the Golden Bird' scudding over hill and dale at light- 
ning speed on the fox's brush. He always remembers 
the anger and mortification depicted on the face of little 
Rumpelstiltskin when the Queen discovers his name ; 
and the confident and cheery little fellows who are 
jumping down from a sheer rock into the water to 
look after their sheep, which they see grazing at the 
bottom, mistaking the fleecy reflections of the clouds 
for more substantial realities. And beyond all else 
they remember the intense joy and mad enthusiasm 
of the tiny elves, as they are trying on the microscopi- 
cal trousers and infinitesimal boots which the cobbler 
and his wife have prepared. Seldom have children 
had a book more worthy of complete assimilation than 
Grimms' stories ; never have illustrations been more 
suitable to teach the real contents of any book. How 
comes it that Cruikshank felt and showed such sym- 
pathy with the occult world of the 'little people' 
tliat he can exercise such a fascination upon the little 
people in the world above ? 

To quote from Thackeray's essay upon Cruikshank, 
' There is in one of these German stories — " The Elfin 
Grove" — an account of a little girl who is carried away 
by a pitying fairy for a term of seven years, passing 
that period of sweet apprenticeship among the imps 



and sprites of fairyland. Has oui- artist been among 
the same company, and brought back their portraits in 
his sketch-book .'' Mr. Cruikshank alone has had a true 
insight into the character of the little people. They 
are something like men and women, and yet not flesh 
and blood : they are laughing and mischievous, but 
why we know not. Mr. Cruikshank, however, has had 
some dream or other, or else a natural mysterious in- 
stinct, or else some preternatural fairy revelation, which 
has made him acquainted with the looks and ways of 
the fantastical subjects of Oberon and Titania.' A man 
answering to this description, and endowed with such 
qualifications, alone is fitted to be the artistic guardian 
of the true interests of children, and to lead them by 
the hand sympathetically along those paths of wonder 
and mystery which every child should tread once, at 
least, in a lifetime. 

In his illustrations to the Fairy Library he shows 
with equal force his appreciation of the world of fairy- 
land. The Fairy Library comprises three stories : 
'Puss in Boots,' ' Hop-o'-my-Thumb,' and 'Jack and 
the Beanstalk.' The illustrations to the first-named 
tale are the most humorous, those to the second are 
most descriptive and romantic, while the pictures in 
' Hop-o'-my-Thumb ' are the most vivid and startling. 

In ' Jack and the Beanstalk ' there is a picture of 
Jack climbing the beanstalk, and another of his escape 
from the giant on the fairy harp. They are both 
vignettes. In the first we see the beanstalk, up which 
Jack is steadily climbing, arising from infinite space 
below — up, up towards the unknown summit, where 
an overhanging, beetling crag stretches forth its arms, 
as it were, to receive him. On all sides frown wild 
and desolate pinnacles, crowned with ice and snow ; 
in mid-air a golden eagle wheels in majestic circles, 
angry and alarmed to find its impregnable solitude has 
been assailed. All is real, all is earnest. The child 
who looks on such a picture, and does not believe that 
such a beanstalk ever grew, or that Jack did with stout 
and confident, yet withal somewhat fluttering, heart 
ascend it, or who does not believe that the region 
depicted by Cruikshank is topographically correct, has 
grown old before his time, and has lost — if ever he had 
it to lose — the greatest charm our childhood knows, the 
greatest boon our manhood lacks — the power of ima- 
gination, which connects together Form and Phantasm, 
and prevents us becoming the slave of either. The 
second vignette is more weird and wonderful still. 
At the top of a wild corrie, such as may be seen 
from the summit of Scuir-na-Gillian in Skye, stands 
the thwarted and infuriated giant. His hair and gar- 
ments are streaming in the wind. He is hurling 
boulder after boulder down upon Jack, who, astride 
the golden harp, is sinking 'down, down, down to the 



220 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



black earth,' Avhich lies tar below out of sight. One 
huge boulder is descending upon their heads. It is 
not merely drawn and fixed where the etcher lias 
placed it on the plate, it seems to be really falling. 
We watch to see if the harp and its rider can possibly 
escape. There is an intense reality about these illus- 
trations. We are transported into anotlier world, and 
we feel accustomed to our sudden transition — we glory 
in the new things and people we see there. It is this 
vividness which so fascinates children, and which so 
establishes Cruikshank's supremacy as an illustrator of 
children's books. 

In ' Hop-o'-my-Thumb ' the best picture is that of all 
the children, under Hop's guidance, hiding in a cave — 
a real snug genuine cave, such as children love. The 
ogre, in his seven-league boots, is coming round the 
corner of a mountain with lightning speed. There are 
no half-measures about him ; he is coming at a speed 
which seven-league boots alone can give — at a speed 
which can only be imagined in cases where the runner 
but touches ground every twenty miles or so. He, 
too, is not merely etched on to the plute, he is the 
living embodiment of motion and speed. The drawing 



of this plate is, technically, almost the cleverest piece 
of work Cruikshank has given us. The Prince riding 
on the fox's brush in Grimms' tale of' The Golden Bird' 
is another splendid representation of speed and motion. 
Numerous and valuable are the various other works 
Cruikshank has bequeathed to the child-world, more or 
less suitable to the tastes and capacities of his little lega- 
tees — ' Cinderella and the Glass Slipper,' ' Hans of Ice- 
land,' ' Peter Schlemihl,' 'The Pentamerone.'and others, 
wliich all children should in their turn see, revere, love, 
and remember. May they in after-life have reason to 
thank their good fortune that they were led through the 
groves of fairyland, and preserved in the wild wastes 
of ogredom, by the firm and gentle hand of George 
Cruikshank. May another, too, arise who shall in the 
future perform the great and ennobling duty of teach- 
ing and guiding those who are what we were, and will 
be what we are. What his reward may be cannot be 
told, but the lives of thousands here will be brightened 
by his labours ; and of a truth has it been written, the 
kingdom of heaven is the kingdom of little children. 

T. T. Greg. 



THE OMEN. 

THE face of Day was strange — it seemed malign : 
The Sun, like Fortune, that showers gold on men. 
Nor on the morn nor all thro' noon did shine — 
Averted as though ne'er to turn again. 

Alone and lonely, in my lonesome room 

(My eyes were heav}', but my heart was lead). 

From morn till eve, still seated in the gloom. 
Idle, with listless hands, I had hung my head. 

At length I rose — beset with many fears 
And fancies bad ; — a grandsire at fourscore, 

Bearing the burthen of his sins and j'ears, 

Had dragged his limbs as nimbly to the door. 

Vast clouds o'erspread the heaven : the air was hush ; 

Until a whisper stirred the dark green leaves 
(As I .stood listening there) on tree and bush — 

Like Conscience when she cannot rest and grieves. 

I raised my eyes, and saw wliere, through the sky — ■ 
Coursers of joy their sun-bright necks extent — 

Two wild-ducks, straining, side by side did fly — 
To some far nest, theii- home, ere nightfall bent. 



Then straight — like Remus watching from his hill 
The flights of birds — I, shuddering, called aloud— 

' What omen ....'' In the abyss of unknown ill 
Tell me what secrets do the years enshroud ! ' 

George Douglas, 



NOTES AND REVIEWS 



221 



OUR PLATES. 

' The Tower of Brass,' by E. Bume Jones, A.R.A., has been reproduced by permission of William 
Connal, Jr., Esq. 

' Folly,' a statuette by E. Onslow Ford, has been reproduced by permission of the artist. 



NOTES AND REVIEW. 



Mr. E. a. Walton has been elected by the Royal Scottish 
Academy an A.R.S. A. 

The Grosvenor Gallery. — The pastels at the Grosvenov 
Gallery are, this year, a little disappointing, after the promise of 
the first exhibition. We feel how much the artistic aspect of the 
earlier collection was due to the presence of works sent by foreign 
contributors, who used the pastel on account of certain advantages 
offered by the material, and not as a substitute for paint. 

No medium at the artist's command gives him such oppor- 
tunities as the pastel for felicitous and suggestive expression, and 
so little temptation to the giving dull records of uninteresting facts. 
Our artists, though, seem to have spent less time in testing the 
possibilities of this material than in making pictures whose sole 
qualification for being on the Grosvenor walls at this time of the 
year is that they are executed in pastel. There are, however, 
undoubted evidences of more serious work, which we hope will, 
in time, give rise to a Society of Pastellists worthy of its name. 

An artist hitherto little known to the picture-seer sends three 
small contributions, which alone would make this exhibition well 
worth a visit. Their charm lies in their unobtrusive realism ; 
their suggestive manipulation, and clever rendering of varied 
surfaces, and the true artistic selection evinced in the manner of 
their arrangement. Mr. M*Lure Hamilton is an artist with the 
faculty of knowing where to commence and where to leave off. 

Mr. Muhrman, who uses his pastels with peculiar individuality, 
is represented by no less than nine pictures ; they are rich and 
harmonious in colour, often very dignified in design, and pos- 
sessed of excellent qualities of tone and execution. 

The Alps, hitherto reckoned an impossible subject for pictorial 
representation, have provided Mr. Stott of Oldham with several 
motives. He has managed to express in these pictures a sense of 
space and great height. 

Mr. Peppercorn has done some admirable work; both 'The 
Cornfield ' and ' The Hay Waggon ' are designs most poetically 
conceived, full of individuality and expressive treatment. In 
tone they are far below the scale of nature ; yet, notwithstanding 
this, Mr. Peppercorn seems to have lost hold of none of the 
palpitating mystery of sunlight or luminosity in his rendering of a 
summer sky. 

Mr. Charles Shannon has a puzzle, which we were obliged to 
leave unsolved. 

' A Study for a Picture,' by Mr. Wetherbee, has some charming 
pastoral feeling. 

Mr. Allan's * Evening in Holland ' is very solemn, and most 
unjustly placed beyond the reach of careful consideration. 

'Little Simone and her Doll,' by Mr. J. E. Blanche, is a pic- 
ture strong in its iia'iveit'^ and is, moreover, a good study in the 
use of the pastel. 

Mr. Swan's single drawing is not a very important one ; in 
the modelling of the polar bears there is, of course, evidence of 
the artist's extraordinary knowledge and constructive powers. 

There are, besides those we have already mentioned, some 
excellent pictures and studies by Mr. J. E. Christie, Mr. Tuke, 
Mr. Frank Hind, Mr. Gabriel Thompson, Mr. Theodore Cook, 
and Mr. Bate. The two little sketches by Mr. Arthur Melville 
are fine in handling and quality of colour : and the effect of day- 
light in Mr. George Clausen's ' Little Rose ' is admirably expressed. 



Of the many portraits that partially cover these walls, few rise 
above the level of the commonplace, and some really offend by 
their dreary vulgarity. 

The Black-and-White and Pastel and the Water- 
COLOUR E.XHIBITIONS, GLASGOW. — The present exhibitions of 
works in black-and-white and in pastel, and of water-colour, in 
the galleries of the Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts contain 
little of value sufficient to mark progress, and add as little to 
current knowledge of process. Yet so far as the general public 
are concerned the collection introduces, or at least emphasises, one 
or two points of some educational value. For example, the 
works of the old masters like Diirer are hung side by side with 
those of the workers of to-day, thus challenging comparison, and 
enabling the observer to draw certain instructive inferences. 
Comparison between the present and the long yesterday of the 
sixteenth century leads us to inquire whether our nineteenth 
century work as here represented is better than that of the 
old masters. What we have now are, on the one hand, the 
results of tasks in which Nature looks as she does on the ground 
glass of a photographic camera, and on the other, essays whose 
Ijroad expanses of paper might well bear being at least partially 
occupied by photographic means or otherwise. But the old 
masters at least knew the uses of a line, and knew better than to 
add to it what could only detract from its dignity and simplicity. 
' Black and white ' is a comprehensive term, and has indeed come 
to mean any combination of the two. This combination, when 
spread over the paper, often covers, like charily, a multitude of sins. 
But of simple black and white there are notable and worthy 
examples in the works of Legros, WooUescroft, Stead, A. Roche, 
G. Thomson, and others. Pastel, our newest craze, which has 
been eagerly seized by amateur and artist as a means of demon- 
strating 'how to do,' as opposed to 'what to do,' is the most 
recent tribute to the goddess of 'technique.' The maxim of 
colourists, 'Know the limitations of your vehicle, and never mix 
on your canvas what were better arranged for on your palette,' 
should be pondered over by those who essay the use of pastel. 
To draw in pastels is not merely to place upon canvas or paper 
a mixture of diy powder ; nor need one hope to obtain a result 
appropriate to this medium by producing a work which is neither 
oil nor water-colour, nor pastel, but a conglomeration of the vices 
of all of these vehicles. Pastels possess a charm all their own ; 
but they do not have this charm because they are like works pro- 
duced in another medium. Good examples of pastels are to be 
seen in the works of Mr. J. Lavery, whose ' Sea Nymph ' needs only 
the redeeming touch of imagination ; and of Mr. William Stott of 
Oldham, wherein a less clever hand would have made instead his 
idyllic colour only a mixture of dust. Mr. James Guthrie's ' Spin- 
ning Girl ' exemplifies thinking away from instead of on the canvas ; 
Mr. E. A. Walton's powers as here shown are clearly capable of 
grappling with something greater. Mr. Shannon recalls the Pre- 
Raphaelites, while Mr. Pryde attempts Whistlerian methods, catch- 
ing the shadosv and missing the subsiance. 

The general level is however fairly high; but the strength 
which the use of such pure colour should give is not much above 
that of the water-colours. Evanescent of necessity, the fairy-like 
charms of the pastels seem to have been spread in vain before the 
eyes of the would-be possessors of works of art. These are pro- 



222 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



bably afraid lest the capital invested in a pastel drawing may some 
day be lying a chaotic film between the canvas and the glass. What 
one may expect to find in a water-colour exhibition nowadays is 
fairly well understood. One needs rarely to consult the catalogue. 
The subject, leaving aside the method, is sufficient to identify the 
artist. Yet the show is not wholly uninteresting. In fault of old 
masters we have archaic methods, so that one may compare if one 
cares the results of methods which reach back to the days when 
the Georges were kings with the most recent phases of clever- 
ness. For beauty both of conception and of colour, and for 
ends arrived at regardless of the nature of the means, ' Phyllis,' by 
Mr. E. A. Walton, now A.R.S.A., oflfers a standard judged by 
which many a work at its side is found wanting. ' Phyllis ' really 
marks a step of progress in water-colour art. The only criticism it 
seems possible to make upon it is that some of the care spent on 
the face of the figure might well have been extended to the other 
details, ihoush the extreme subordination of the latter unquestion- 
ably has its effect. Mr. J. Crawhall, as always, attracts attention by 
the dexterous cleverness of his parrots. His bull-fight sketches are 
almost too painfully realistic. Mr. James Paterson always shows 
some interesting work ; but there is in it just that little too much of 
the artist that prevents him pnying Nature the homage she requires. 
The president puts inio his contribution a grace and feeling which 
should serve as a lesson to his society. Much of the rest of the 
work is good, but though displaying earnestness of purpose lacks 
that faculty of close observation which unforiunately the too 
literary method of our education has reduced almost to the rudi- 
mentary stage of the serpent's feet. 

The Art Congress in Edinhurgh. — The second Congress 
of the National Association for the Advancement of Art and its 
Application to Industry was held in Edinburgh in the last days of 
October and the first of November. It was not so numerously 
attended as was the first congress held ai Liverpool last year, but 
in every essential respect it may be held to have been, after the 
manner of congresses, a -viccess. Any one who expects a congress, 
scientific, mechanicnl, medical, artistic, or any other, to be aught 
else than a pleasing social function deserves to be disappointed. 
Not that the people who attend such mee'ings are not serious- 
minded persons when ihey are at home minding their own affairs, 
but ra'her that they go to a congress for a holiday, with the inten- 
tion of unbending themselves for their own amusement, and that 
of those wi h whom ihey have some more or less definite intel- 
lectual sympatlies. Those who sneer ai congresses do so, at the 
best, bec:uise they underestimate the force of gregarious impulses, 
or because the congress is that of another flock than the one to 
which they belong. 

When all has been said that may be said by way of pooh- 
poohing a congress fiT debating about art, there remains quite 
sufficient evidence of utility to justify every one who desires the 
dissemination of knowledge of and interest in art to do what is 
possible to make the congress year by year more and more useful 
and succes-ful. 

Last year at Liverpool, one of the features of the meeting was 
the set, evident from the beginning, which the younger men, and 
some of the older ones, made against the Royal Academy. This 
year the Royal Academy escaped without assault ; even the Royal 
Scottish Academy, much as it has been assailed in ihe Press, did 
not suffer from a single shot. The vials of artistic wrath were 
reserved for South Kensington. Mr. Hodgson, one of the 
examiners in painting, by the way, at'acked South Kensington 
with immense vigour, and all through the meeting the same spirit 
prevailed. The pnper of Mr. F. H. Newbery was a brief but 
rather effective reply to the attack, and Messrs. William Morris and 
Walter Crane, boh examiners at South Kensington, supported 
his views. There seems to be abroad a good deal of miscon- 
ception of what is called the 'South Kensington system.' 
Undoubtedly much of the South Kensington work is indefen- 
sible ; but that it is due to the want of teaching powers and want 
also of learning powers on the part alike of teachers and taught is 



probably truer than that it is due to a vicious system. It is the 
fashion to attack systems blindfold when they do not produce 
quite what has been expected. If what those say who make a 
counter attack upon Mr. Hodgson and his friends be true, there is 
no such thing as a ' South Kensington system.' The arrange- 
ments of the department are elastic enough to admit the proverbial 
coach and six. The success of the journey depends on the driver 
and the steeds. It is to be remembered that of the thousands who 
study art under the department, only a very few can possibly 
become artists, in any legitimate sense, and that the utmost we 
may expect to attain is the avoidance of such measures as will 
infallibly stultify artistic impulses. Artists are born, not made ; but 
they are easily killed. Besides, it is quite possible to blame South 
Kensington for what it were more just to lay at the door of our 
system of education other than that of education in art, and also 
for what might fairly be laid at the door of the present phase of 
the development of social progress. Our education code, even 
with recent changes, is after all an ingenious non-adaptation of 
means to ends. The only ground for hope is that it will sooner 
rather than later be admitted to be, what it is already discovered 
to be, unworkable. The whole system of payment by results, 
with its consequences — superficial cratn, and even fiaud — must go 
by the board. The economical situation also, when one is talk- 
ing of the education of artists, is too powerful a factor to be 
neglected, but too extensive to treat at the moment. Those who 
attack South Kensington may be perfectly justified in their general 
strictures, but not quite justified in bUming South Kensington 
with its 'iron-bound* sy.^tem for conditions which exist inde- 
pendently, and which would remain even if South Kensington 
were reformed out of sight. All this is quite consistent with a 
desire to see education in art placed on a fresh basis. Besides 
the question of education in art, perhaps the most interesting 
features of the congress were the battle-royal between the archi- 
tects and the sculptors, and the engagement between Mr. Rich- 
mond and the Impressionists on the one side, and the critics on 
the other. Mr. Richmond's paper was clever, one-sided, and, as 
pointed out by one of the speakers, extremely indefinite. He 
attacked the Impressionists iti unmeasured language ; but who 
were the objects of hts attack did not appear. There is much 
in the work of some of the Impressionists that no one would care 
seriously to defend ; but only the most narrow bigotry could deny 
that they represeut an interesting and instructive phase of modern 
art. That it will pass away is of course certain ; that it repre- 
sents a movement of a more or less intellectual character is un- 
questionable. 'Experiment,' so far from being 'taboo,' is the 
necessary forerunner of all things good or bad. The first artist, 
and the last, who do not merely follow where others lead, must 
experiment before they are capable of achievement. It must be 
said, however, that Mr. Richmond spoke to an audience which 
he knew contained not a single Impressionist, for there are none 
such in England or Scotland, and that therefore his manifesto 
was rather overweighted. His plea for national art had a flavour 
of jingoism. \\ hy should there be national art in his sense, any 
more than there should be national chemistry or national physi- 
ology ? Is a bi autiful line or a harmonious arrangement of colour 
less so because it happens to be painted by a Frenchman rather 
than by an Englishman ? 

The critic, so f^r from being 'rampant,' as some who did not 
know expected he would be, was singularly retiring. When he 
did come out, as he did in Mr. Spielmann's paper, ' Artists v. 
Critics,' it was only to be unanimously abjured. At both con- 
gresses the arti>t has indeed had everything his own way, and if 
he has not made the best of it, he has himself to blame. Amid 
the technical disputes, and the education and other controversies 
that make up the hurly-burly of the congress, there does emerge 
something which the general public may be presumed to lay hold 
of; and this something, small as it may be, serves to give those 
who wander in the outer courts some glimpse of the palace of 
art which the few are so eager and so unable to keep for them- 
selves. 



NOTES AND REVIEW 



223 



At/ in Scotland: its Origin and Progress. By Robert Bkvdall, 
Master of the St. George's Art School of Glasgow. (Black- 
wood, 1SS9.) 

While maay excellent estimates of inHividual Scottish painters 
have appeared during recent years, we have hitherto had no con- 
nected and comprehensive history of Scottish art, and Mr. Brydall 
deserves great credit for tiie careful and laborioiis effort in this 
direction which he has now produced. His portly volume of 
some five hundred pages is evidently the result of wide and well- 
directed reading, and he appears to have made himself thoroughly 
familiar with the widely-scattered and ofien obscure material for an 
historical survey of Scottish painting, — and not of painting alone, 
for he has given greater comprehensiveness to his worit by includ- 
ing less exhaustive, but still useful ani valuable, references to 
architecture, sculpture, engraving, and illumination. His aiiri has 
been distinctly historical j he seldom enters upon any very elabo- 
rate estimate of the place and powers of specitic artists ; and, when 
he does tend in tliis direction, he is apt to err on the side of an 
amiable leniency; — to pronounce, for instance, that the works of 
Arthur Perig.al ae 'o^ten verging on hardness,' is certainly to hint 
the truth with a quite undue restraint of phrase. 

In his opening chapters Mr. Brydall treats briefly of the early 
Celtic art of the country, of the standing and sculptured stones, of 
the illuminations of prayer-books and armorials, of the carvings at 
Linlithgow and Stirling, of the splendi.i Trinity College Church 
altar-piece, of the paintings in Houston Church, and those in 
Foulis Easter Church, of which an interesting description is quoted 
from Mr. Stewart's Historical Sketciies. Then he deals with 
early Scottish portraits, the work of unknown artists, expressing 
more than a needful amount of scepticism as to the authenticity of 
the aC' epted portr..its of Queen Mary. Wi h the end of the 
sixteenth century, and the appearance of George Jamesone of 
Aberdeen, we iread somevvhat firmer ground, and enier upon a 
sequence of Scotiish painters whose names, at least, are known, and 
some of whose works can be identified. His account of these painters 
is, for the most part, full and accurate, and his researches have 
enabled him to bring forward many artists whose names even will 
be new to the majority of readers, and are not included in the 
various dictionaries of art biography. In dealing with the later 
artists, where the material is so ample as to necessitate selection 
and compression, the facts that he sets down are well chosen and 
significant. In passing, we may notice that some curious in- 
accuracies have crept into the account of Andrew Geddes, A.R. A. 
This artist's portrait group in the Vernon collection represents, not 
George, but Daniel Terry, the actor, and his wife, the eldest 
daughter of Alexander Nasmyth ; and no portrait of Lord 
Camperdown, by Geddes, was ever engraved by Ward. Probably 
the latter error has arisen out of the statement in Mrs. Geddes's 
'Memoir' that the portrait of Wilkie, mezzotinted by William 
Ward, was 'in the possession of the Earl of Camperdown.' 
Again, Mr. Brydall falls into a common mistake in stating that 
this painter was born 'about 17S9.' In \{\% Etchings of Wilkie 
and Geddes, David Laing gives the entry of his baptism, from the 
Regi-ster of St. Cuthbert's parish, Edinburgh, wliich proves that 
he was born on the 5th of April 17S3. The author's remarks on 



the technical method of Geddes's etchings are also rather mislead- 
ing. A'"ter specifying such prints as the head of Alexander Nasmyth, 
the portrait of the artist's mother, and the ' Girl with a Pear,' he 
re mirks that, 'in point of genuine etching free of Inir, it is ques- 
tionable if these have been surpassed,' the fact being that the 
dry-point bur is retained, and the rich velvety blacks which it 
yields taken full advantage of, in all the plates we have named, 
and it is the rapid disappearance of this bur by repeated printings 
that renders the later issues of these subjects so vastly inferior to 
the original impressions. 

An interesting portion of the volume is that which deals with 
the various combined efforts that have from tiine to time been 
made in S-otlaiid for the furtherance of art. We have an account 
of the Academy of St. Luke, established in Edinburgh in 1729, 
and of the Foulis's Academy in Glasgow. Of this latter institu- 
tion some further particulars will be found in Campbell's curious 
review of Scottish art in ins /ourney from Edinburgh, iSii, along 
with the names of some of the pupils not mentioned in the present 
work, such as M'Lauchlane, the Stevenson brothers, and George 
Walker, sen., and also Paul — not Andrew Paul, as given by Mr. 
Brydall, but J\ol>ert, as given in Foulis's catalogue, from wliich he 
quotes. 

A chapter is devoted to an account of the Edinburgh Society 
for the Encouragement of Arts, Sciences, and Manufactures, 
founded about 1755, and to the formation of the Honourable the 
Board of Manufactures, and the working of its Trustees' Academy 
from its opening in 1760 till its affiliation with the South Kensing- 
ton Department in iSsS; another chapter deals with the Edin- 
burgh Society of Incorporated Artists, and their exhibitions held 
from iSoS till 1S13, with the exhibitions held by the ' Edinburgh 
Exhibition Society' in Raeburn's Rooms from 1S14 to 1S16, with 
the history of the Institution for the Encouragement of ihe Fine 
Arts in Scotland, and witn the foundation and progress of the 
Royal Scottish Academy ; and a third chronicles the hi--tory of 
art in Glasgow, under the auspices of the "Institute for Promoting 
and Encouraging the Fine Arts in the West of Scotland,' the 
'Dilettanti Society,' the 'West of Scotland Academy,' and the 
'Institute of the Fine Arts.' Much information is also given 
regarding the Art Collections and Art Unions of Scotland, and 
the volume concludes with biographies of the leading Scottish 
painters who have died in the present century, and a list of the 
members and associates of the Royal Scottish Academy till 1SS8. 
We cannot help noticing that a more scrupulous revision of the 
proof-sheets would have rectified numerous little inaccuracies that 
occur throughout the pages. Thus Joseph the sculptor figures 
frequently as Josephs, Le Conte the engraver appears as 
Leconte, the Mr. Oswald of Changue, of page 330, is none other 
than the Mr. Oswald of Auchencruive of page 235. It should 
also be noted that the well-known family of^ decorative and land- 
scape painters in Edinburgh persistently appears as Norrie, instead 
of Norie. The latter form is that still used by members of the 
family ; it so appears in the signature of ' Ja. Norie's ' and ' James 
Norie, Jun.,' on the original indenture of the Edinburgh Academy 
of St. Luke, and in Gibson's transcript of that document in the 
Annual Register, though the present wiiter, in his copy made from 
the last-mentioned source, has inadvertently altered the words. 



SONG. 

MY lady plucked a rosebud. 
It shivered in affright : 
She laid it on her bosom. 

Where it died of sheer delight. 

Ah ! would she so might gather, 

And lull me there to rest ; 
I d care not for the dying 

If I died upon her breast. 

Reginald Horsley. 



224 



THE SCOTTISH ART REVIEW 



MY LADY'S WREATH. 



COME, flowers, that I may weave a wreath to crown 
My Lady fair. Moss lowly, grasses tall, 
I need you all. 
And all your graces ; let each bring her own 
Peculiar gift my Lady to adorn. 

Queen Rose, your thorn 
Forego today ; my Lady is so sweet 
That thorns, perforce, all bloom with roses her to greet. 

Queen Roses ! blushing red and snowy pale, 
Ah ! blush and pale indeed, when to her face. 

More full of grace. 
You lift your own. Shy Violets, with your veil 
Of leaves, ye, like my Lady, hidden grow. 

And few do know 
Her face : your sweetness would be more complete 
Did she but touch your buds, in passing, with her feet. 



Fair Lilies, like to angels pure and white, 
Ye, like my Lady, shun the heat and glare 

That everywhere 
Beyond your shelf ring bower is dazzling bright : 
She is more pure than ye ; in tenderer shade 

Her bower is made. 
Like her deep eyes, where holiest thoughts do dwell, 
Are ye, dark velvet Pansies, and she loves ye well. 

Come, Ivy, with your tendrils long and frail 
To bind my wreath : come, fairest Commeline, 

Whose blue divine 
Doth hint of heaven; Laurel, Jasmine pale. 
Come, Passion-flowers, Myrtle, Melilot, 

Forget-me-not. 
Ah, flowers ! bring all the beauty that ye may, 
Yet is this Lady far more lovely, ye will say. 



Behold my wreath of flowers and softest moss ! 
No jewelled crown could bring to her the bliss 

I trow, of this 
Bright coronal, which brings nor care nor cross 
To vex her. Go, and seek her in her bowers, 

O happy flowei's ! 
If but my Lady touch you with her lips 
Your sweetness shall be then indeed without eclipse. 

C. Grey. 




gvTTa- cavaT- lapid em 
non-vi- sed • s^pe-cadendo 



1 



Edinburgh : T. and A. Constable, Priti.'crs to If er Majesty. 



■-^''■■■'Ki^: 






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